Author: Constance Hale
Publisher: Three Rivers Press
Release Date: 2001-12-04
Today’s writers need more spunk than Strunk: whether it's the Great American e-mail, Madison Avenue advertising, or Grammy Award-winning rap lyrics, memorable writing must jump off the page. Copy veteran Constance Hale is on a mission to make creative communication, both the lyrical and the unlawful, an option for everyone. With its crisp, witty tone, Sin and Syntax covers grammar’s ground rules while revealing countless unconventional syntax secrets (such as how to use—Gasp!—interjections or when to pepper your prose with slang) that make for sinfully good writing. Discover how to: *Distinguish between words that are “pearls” and words that are “potatoes” * Avoid “couch potato thinking” and “commitment phobia” when choosing verbs * Use literary devices such as onomatopoeia, alliteration, and metaphor (and understand what you're doing) Everyone needs to know how to write stylish prose—students, professionals, and seasoned writers alike. Whether you’re writing to sell, shock, or just sing, Sin and Syntax is the guide you need to improve your command of the English language.
Author: Constance Hale
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Release Date: 2012-10-15
A writing handbook that celebrates the infinite pizzazz of verbs. Writers know it instinctively: Verbs make a sentence zing. Grammar gurus agree: Drama in writing emerges from the interplay of a subject (noun) and a predicate (verb). Constance Hale, the best-selling author of Sin and Syntax, zooms in on the colorful world of verbs. Synthesizing the pedagogical and the popular, the scholarly and the scandalous, Hale combines the wit of Bill Bryson with the practical wisdom of William Zinsser. She marches through linguistic history to paint a layered picture of our language—from before it really existed to the quirky usages we see online today. She warns about habits to avoid and inspires with samples of brilliant writing. A veteran teacher, Hale gives writing prompts along the way, helping readers “try, do, write, play.” Vex, Hex, Smash, Smooch guides us to more powerful writing by demonstrating how to use great verbs with style.
Author: Brooks Landon
Release Date: 2013-06-25
Genre: Language Arts & Disciplines
Based on the bestselling series from The Great Courses, Building Great Sentences celebrates the sheer joy of language—and will forever change the way you read and write. Great writing begins with the sentence. Whether it’s two words (“Jesus wept.”) or William Faulkner’s 1,287-word sentence in Absalom! Absalom!, sentences have the power to captivate, entertain, motivate, educate, and, most importantly, delight. Yet, the sentence-oriented approach to writing is too often overlooked in favor of bland economy. Building Great Sentences teaches you to write better sentences by luxuriating in the pleasures of language. Award-winning Professor Brooks Landon draws on examples from masters of long, elegant sentences—including Don DeLillo, Virginia Woolf, Joan Didion, and Samuel Johnson—to reveal the mechanics of how language works on thoughts and emotions, providing the tools to write powerful, more effective sentences.
Author: June Casagrande
Publisher: Ten Speed Press
Release Date: 2010-07-27
Great writing isn’t born, it’s built—sentence by sentence. But too many writers—and writing guides—overlook this most important unit. The result? Manuscripts that will never be published and writing careers that will never begin. In this wickedly humorous manual, language columnist June Casagrande uses grammar and syntax to show exactly what makes some sentences great—and other sentences suck. With chapters on “Conjunctions That Kill” and “Words Gone Wild,” this lighthearted guide is perfect for anyone who’s dead serious about writing, from aspiring novelists to nonfiction writers, conscientious students to cheeky literati. So roll up your sleeves and prepare to craft one bold, effective sentence after another. Your readers will thank you. From the Trade Paperback edition.
The only fun, friendly, and surefire defense against the grammar snobs Having already made a name for herself with Grammar Snobs Are Great Big Meanies, now in its fifth printing, June Casagrande returns with Mortal Syntax, taking on the 101 most frequently attacked usage choices. Dedicating one short chapter to each, Casagrande brings her subject to life, teaching English usage through lively and amusing personal anecdotes. Mortal Syntax includes such chapters as: ? "I wish I was taller" ? "I am continuously watching Simpsons reruns" ? "Was it Horton that heard the Who?" Casagrande's clear and concise lessons-with entertaining titles and themes-make a potentially prickly subject go down like a spoonful of sugar.
Author: Arthur Plotnik
Publisher: Random House Reference
Release Date: 2009-01-06
Today's writer needs more than just a solid knowledge of usage and composition to write successfully. Bestselling author Arthur Plotnik reveals the secrets to attention-grabbing, unforgettable writing, in this trade paperback edition. Updated with all-new writing exercises, Spunk & Bite will help writers take books, articles, business reports, memos, and even e-mail messages to the next level. From the Trade Paperback edition.
A fun, practical guide that reveals the essentials of good fiction and memoir writing by exposing the most common mistakes literary writers make. All great works of fiction and memoir are unique-but most bad novels, stories, and memoirs have a lot in common. From clunky dialogue to poorly sketchedout characters, sagging pacing to exaggerated prose, these beginners' mistakes drive any agent or editor to their stock rejection letter, telling the aspiring writer "Thanks, but this isn't for us," and leaving many to wonder what exactly it is that they're doing wrong. Veteran writing coach, developmental editor, and writing instructor Jessica Page Morrell will fill in the gaps in every rejection letter you've ever received. In Thanks, But This Isn't for Us, Morrell uses her years of experience to isolate the specific errors beginners make, including the pitfalls of unrealistic dialogue, failing to "show, not tell," and over-the-top plot twists. These are just a few of the problems that keep writers from breaking through with their work. Sympathetic and humane, but pulling no punches, Thanks, But This Isn't for Us shows writers precisely where they've gone wrong and how to get on the right track. In sixteen to-the-point chapters, with checklists, exercises, takeaway tips, and a glossary, Morrell helps readers transcend these mistakes so that they don't have to learn the hard way: with another rejection letter.
Clear, concise, effective, THE RANDOM HOUSE GUIDE TO GOOD WRITING is for anyone who wishes to communicate well in writing. Mitchell Ivers shows us how to master the medium and the message with an array of features: Precise guidelines on word usage, grammar, and punctuation--and how to decide with "rules" you can discard to suit your purpose; How to choose the tone and style appropriate to your audience and subject; The essential components of plot in fiction and structure in nonfiction, and much more. An Alternate Selection of the Book-of-the-Month Club A Main Selection of the Writer's Digest Book Club From the Paperback edition.
Author: Douglas Wilson
Release Date: 2011
Genre: Language Arts & Disciplines
"Wordsmithy is for writers of every sort, whether experienced veterans, still just hoping, or somewhere in between. Through a series of out-of-the-ordinary lessons, each with its own takeaway points and recommended readings, Douglas Wilson provides indispensable guidance, showing how to develop the writer's craft and the kind of life from which good writing comes."~Publisher.
Author: Barry Tarshis
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Release Date: 2009-09-29
Good grammar is essential for effective communication. Yet many of us are plagued by the same nagging question: If I'm so smart why does grammar make me feel so dumb? Grammar For Smart People can help. Here at last, is a lively, user-friendly guide that zeroes in on the areas that give everyone the most trouble, and it does it with an advantage most grammar books lack - a light touch. You won't feel as though you're back in the fifth grade, diagramming sentences and struggling with a grammar textbook filled with dull, unbreakable rules.
Author: Tom Ogden
Release Date: 2007
Forget about David Copperfield, cruise ship illusionists, and birthday party magicians. They're so old school, so 20th century. The conjuring that people starting out in magic today want to do is edgier, grittier, quick, visual, and maybe a little dangerous - magic to the max. Welcome to the world of street magic! The Complete Idiot's Guide to Street Magic will teach you how to do it! Even some of the simplest stunts, if performed effectively, have the same strong potential to amaze onlookers as the more challenging feats. Out of the literally thousands of tricks that can be included, only those that are the most direct and have the greatest impact, both visually and psychologically, will appear in the book. Each magical effect will be rated on a scale from one-to-three stars, easy to difficult, according to how hard it is to learn and/or to perform.