I Promise You Won't Learn A Thing From This Blog

The official blog for author Ashley Chappell. Check back every week for a few laughs at my expense or, if you know the love-hate process that is writing, commiseration.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Passive is for Pansies

I, as a writer, am formally renouncing my habit of overly using the passive voice in my fiction. For the sake of readers everywhere, I will also henceforth ban the use of the following formulaic sentence structure in my writing: "As the Noun Verbed Adverbly..."

Adverbs and adjectives do not necessarily improve prose. But they do improve word count, if we can define 'improve' in this case as 'to increase in size.'

Nobody wants to read that 'the doe's heart was pierced by an arrow flown from the hunter's steady hand." They just want to know that the hunter shot the deer and his hungry family had venison for dinner instead of old potatoes.

There are thousands of possible active verbs that I could be using, and if I can't think of one at the time, then I'll make one up. Yes, you heard me. I will make one up. You can't tell me that doesn't take balls.

Now, as manifestos go, I'm sure this one is pretty weak. But from now on I'm standing by my new conviction - The passive voice truly is for pansies.

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