Skip to main content

STOP TELLNG. START SHOWING: 101


You have been spending way too much time with WAS.
You thought he WAS your friend, your mate, your amigo.
You WERE wrong. 
He WAS a bad influence.
He WAS TELLING your story.
Was, Were, Is, Are, and To Be express a state of being.
They TELL what something, or someone, IS.  
They don’t SHOW what is happening. 

They are dull, boring, overused, lazy, and—from this day forth—dead to you. 

They are like Zombies. They will rise from the dead, infiltrating your document, the moment you relax your guard.  


This calls for guerilla warfare.  
It is time to wage war on WAS, and his buddies WERE, IS, ARE, and TO BE. 
It is time to eradicate them from your vocabulary. Kill them. 
Or, at least lock them up, in a deep dark dungeon, and throw away the key.  


Your mission is to search your current WIP (work in progress), find WAS, and eliminate as many as possible. Then do the same with WERE, ARE, IS, and other TO BE verbs.  

Instead of TELLING:
He WAS tall. 
SHOW:
Andre instinctively ducked every time he walked under a doorway. 
Andrea’s hairstyle suggested she recently dodged a gauntlet of ceiling fans.        
     
Be creative. 
Do not BORE your readers.  

He WAS tall, is BORING.  
WAS is  LAZY. 

It WAS okay in the first draft.
But, should not be allowed a visa into the final draft, even with a valid passport.  
Let the KILL WAS war begin.  


Keep wRiting,
vck

(Disclaimer: In accordance with the Equal Words Riots Act of 2047, all prisoners of war must be allowed at least one appearance per chapter.)



Comments