Want to improve your writing? Do you desire to make it more interesting? Writing that grabs people in and makes them to digest all that you have to say to them? Then mind the verbs that you use. Look for the active, use the passive only when you need to. Strengthen your writing skills.
Did you know that verbs fit into three categories?
- If the subject performs the action of the verb, we call the verb active.
- If the subject receives the action of the verb, we call the verb passive.
- A verb that is neither active or passive is a linking verb, a form of the verb to be.
Consider these lines from Treasures in the Snow by Patricia M. St. John: “His father wished he had known of this, so that he could have put a chocolate stick on the step, for he hated to disappoint his boy. However, open the back door he must, to roll the milk churns across to the stable; so he lifted the latch. In an instant Dani had dived between his legs like a rabbit, and was kneeling by his slipper in the snow.” Oh… can’t you just picture it? Doesn’t it draw you right in?
Use your verbs, use them well. Don’t over use them…by adding too much colour with the active voice. Be aware of how much passive voice you are using as you want to keep the action moving, or the emotions properly felt etc. Using an active voice in your writing requires the use of strong verbs.
What do strong verbs do?
Strong verbs convey characters, save excess words, and create movement.
Remember that active voice has nothing to do with tense. Tense is in the past, present or future. It doesn’t convey action, just merely when an event occurs. Voice is what defines the relationship between the subject and the verb, basically who does what.
As you are writing, and rewriting, make sure you watch what you are doing with your verbs. Are you conveying the feelings, action and characters they way you want? Are you showing your readers what they need to see, feel and want to know?
Do you want to practice what you have learned? Check out this worksheet.
Interested in other writing tips? Order Words for Emphasis Setting Goals, Regain the LoveOn being a write - arrange