Paint vivid pictures by using the right word.

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SPECIFIC WORDS make a story vivid because they paint a clear picture for the reader.

“A woman with a dog” creates only a vague picture. By replacing “woman” and “dog” with specific words you can bring your story alive:

“A lady with a poodle”

“A tart with a mongrel”

“A goth girl with a puppy”

“A redhead with a Rottweiler”

 

“The man looked like a sports champion” is bland. Show us what kind of man and what kind of sports, and the sentence becomes interesting:

“The gentleman looked like a fencing champion.”

“The thug looked like a boxing champion.”

“The salesman looked like a sumo champion.”

 

Instead of the dull description with generic words “This garden is full of flowers of all kinds” show the kind of flowers to paint a picture:

“This garden is full of roses, honeysuckles, and hollyhocks” – The reader sees a cottage garden.

“This garden is full of crocuses, daffodils and tulips.” – The reader sees a garden in spring.

“The garden is full of daisies, dandelions and thistles.” – The reader sees a garden overgrown with weeds.

 

Before tackling your own manuscript, you may want to practice on these sentences. Use your imagination to replace the underlined generic words with specific ones.

 

I went further down the road until I came to a building half hidden by trees.

She put on her new dress and shoes and applied make-up.

For dinner, he ate meat with vegetables.

 

Have fun. If you like, post your versions as comments. I look forward to reading them.

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