If you’ve been writing for any length of time, you’ve probably heard that adverbs should be avoided. But why? What’s so wrong with adverbs?
Adverbs are a funny thing. Before I started writing, I never paid attention to them and rarely noticed them in books I read. To the undisciplined eye they can seem almost invisible, but that doesn’t justify their use. A painter might be able to fool half their audience by using a rubber stamp to put a cabin in a forest painting, but the trained eye will notice, and they’ll realize it’s a lazy shortcut to painting a picture.
And so it is with the adverb. A lazy shortcut that should be regarded as such.
But what makes it a lazy shortcut? It all boils down to the age old adage of “telling vs showing.” Most writers would agree with the importance of showing over telling, but may not realize that the adverb’s sole reason for existence is to tell rather than to show. Notice the following examples:
>TELLING: The car drove chaotically down the street, trying to get away.
>SHOWING: The car swerved across the road, veering into oncoming traffic before jerking back into its own lane, dipping and diving between cars as it tried to get away.
No doubt you’d agree, the difference between those two sentences is striking, even though it’s a quick example with little forethought. Let’s try another one:
>TELLING: The ninja crept silently across the room, trying not to alert the guards.
>SHOWING: The ninja crouched as he crossed the room, walking on his toes and the edge of his feet, his footfalls little more than a whisper as he tried not to alert the guards.
It may not be Shakespearean in quality, but replacing lazy adverbs with better descriptions makes an instant improvement.
These may be silly examples off the top of my head, but I think they demonstrate how adverbs tell, when the writer should be striving to show. Granted, it’s not always bad to tell, sometimes we need to, so we can move the story along. As such, infrequent use of adverbs is fine. The one exception, though, is in dialogue attribution. This is one place adverbs should never be used. Why not?
When our characters speak, they speak with purpose. Unlike in real life, where people may chat to pass the time or to fill what would otherwise be an uncomfortable silence, our characters never say anything that isn’t crafted with care and motivated by some meaningful objective. Whether it’s to advance the plot,... keep reading on reddit ➡
You know how it is with writing advice if you've been writing for a while. Some advice you take to heart, some of it you take with a grain of salt, and some you just outright ignore.
I did the latter with the adverb thing.
I'm an adverby writer. I tried cutting them out and failed epically.
Well, I am having trouble writing today so, just for shits and giggles, I decided to go over my WIP and remove the 'thought verbs' and adverbs and I was surprised at what I found.
I discovered that everywhere I had used adverbs in dialogue tags, I had also described the same thing in the action beats. I didn't need the adverbs. I was already doing what they recommend (using the action to describe how the line is said) AND tacking on an adverb out of habit:
Sally trembled with fear. "What the hell was that noise?" she asked shakily.
I can also say, without a doubt, that my writing is cleaner and easier to understand without adverbs (or 'thought verbs' or most dialogue tags other than 'said and 'asked.')
So go over your stuff. You may very well be doing it 'right' already and, if not, you might find that you like your writing without some of the extra stuff.
Happy writing everyone!
So the question is pretty much the one that's in the title. I know that Latin could form adverbs with adj+e, adj+ter, etc. Now, Italian has 'a piedi' (going by foot, walking), 'a cavalcioni' (astride), etc. I also know the locative function that ad had in Latin. Do these prep+n configurations exist in Latin? Or are they a Romance innovation? The -ment(e) Romance adverbs are clearly a continuation of the ablative adverbial configuration, but what about the prep+noun type? Did it exist?
For example, in Swedish, there are prefixes that translate to "giant-", "shit-" and "carrion-" which are used for amplification of words:
"jätteliten" = "giant-small" = really small
"skitgod" = "shit-tasty" = really tasty
"asfin" = "carrion-pretty" = really pretty
Once upon a time, a man named Stephen King said, “The adverb is not your friend,” and caused a war between literary critics, authors, creative writing professors, and aspiring writers who looked at their own works and went, “Oh, hell’s bells!”
What is an adverb? An adverb is a word that modifies other words, usually verbs. Often, they end in “-ly.” Lovingly, quickly, passionately, slowly….etc. Also, those were the first four examples that came to my mind, so apparently I have romance books on the brain.
Animosity towards the adverb is based around the idea that if your verb and consequent sentence are strong, then you shouldn’t need an extra descriptor. “Quickly running” can be “sprinting” or “dashing” or even just plain old “running.” Adverb overkill is generally considered a trait of lazy writing, but the extent of use is often what gets discussed in...I don’t know, shadowy writer dive bars over glasses of effortlessly, plainly, neatly poured gin.
As an aspiring writer/hobby writer, this is one aspect of a book that I often pay attention to while reading. My discussion points I put before you, members of Romancelandia, are this:
To support this post, I went through a few favorite romance books for examples. (Note: none of the below contain spoilers.)
>The Big Sleep
>Here's the notebook for generating images by using CLIP to guide BigGAN.
>It's very much unstable and a prototype, but it's also a fair place to start. I'll likely update it as time goes on.
Steps to follow to generate the first image in a given Google Colab session:
So i was reading about trotzdem and how it works and everything, when i realized just like trotzdem is mainly used as an adverb and that's when i looked up deshalb, deswegen, darum are only adverbs im Wörterbuch, because in the netzwerk book where i first encountered deshalb it was given as a "konnektor". HAH
S. He lived in it, where no one would want to live.
First, is sentence S correct English?
In S, I used "where no one would want to live" to refer to "it'. ("Where no one would want to live" = adverbial relative clause)
Second, is it possible to use this adverbial relative pronoun 'where" to refer to "it"?
So in S, "where no one would want to live" is additional information added to "it".
If it's possible, could you make your own example fit for explaining this?
S. He swims enthusiastically in the pool every morning before dawn to keep in shape.
B. In the pool
C. Every morning
D. Before dawn
E. To keep in shape
I think that, in sentence S, A,B,C,D,E are all adverb phrases grammatically modifying the verb "swims". (I would even call "enthusiastically" an adverb phrase)
Q1) If I'm right, grammatically, can more than two adverb phrases really modify a verb at once like in sentence S?
S1. He likes to talk with me about mathematics.
Q2) Then is sentence S1 correct English as well?
Q3) In sentence S1, are both prepositional phrases "with me" and "about mathematics" modifying "to talk"?
I would say yes to these three questions.
Thank you very much
Syllepsistically? Syllepsitically? I can't figure it out, and Google isn't helping.
S1. "Two years into the program, we had virtually a 100 percent compliance rate"
S2. It is about 2 miles from here.
In S1, does this noun phrase "two years" adverbially modify this prepositional phrase "into the program"?
In S2, does this noun phrase "2 miles" adverbially modify this prepositional phrase "from here"?
S3 . I went to my friend's house four days ago.
In S3, does this noun phrase "four days" modify this adverb "ago"?
To me, it seems obvious that the noun phrases adverbially modify the prepositional phrases and adverb because a noun phrase can actually work like an adverb, but I can't find any source supporting this case. Would you answer my three questions based on your knowledge and intuition?
Je suis en train de lire Arsène Lupin. L’auteur, Leblanc, utilise souvent “point” comme un adverb. Quelques exemples:
Qu’est-ce que ça veut dire? On l’utilise comme ça aujourd’hui ou est-il dépassé?
Looking one specifically not only for the prefixes here-, there-, where-, yond(er)- , but also their derivatives (hence- & co., hither- & co.). Thought someone on this sub might have a list of all of these in one place.
spiritfully? Spiritedly? It says it's wrong in Google Docs, so I'm not sure.
I was looking at the wikipedia entry for Lucius Artorius Castus today, and when I read the English translation of the inscription on his crypt, I noticed the repetition of the word "also". I was curious about what is the Latin word for this so I looked at the original, and my oh my, it was item. According to wiktionary's etymology of item:
> From Middle English item, from Latin item (“also; in the same manner”). The present English meaning derives from a usage in lists, where the first entry would begin in primis (“firstly”) or imprimis, and the other entries with item (“also, moreover”). Later, people less familiar with Latin, seeing such lists, took the word "item" as meaning "a member of a list".
It makes so much sense!
Here is another thread from this subreddit that discussed the word item together with other related words.
Are these types of clues common or even allowed? I've only found one source online for them, which doesn't inspire confidence (https://crypticshewrote.wordpress.com/explanations/)
It’s off to lose effectiveness and it’s out to tire (4)
>!WEAR, from "wear off" and "wear out"!<
It’s in to interrupt and it’s out to omit (3)
>!CUT, from "cut in" and "cut out"!<
I've seen some grammar articles using the terminology "adverb clause" for subordinate clauses as: "When he arrived at the airport..." or "before I left..." However, while reading/studying some passages of CGEL on subordination, I've noticed that the authors don't use this terminology. So, my questions are: Is there a type of clause that indeed can function as an adverb? If so, Is that type of clause recognized and accepted by linguists?
As in “slightly-difficult text” vs. “slightly difficult text”? We don’t in North America, but I’m seeing different things online about British style.
Ich hätte eine Frage über das Adverb "relativ". Ich habe das Gefühl, dass seine Benutzung oft oberflächlich sein kann.
Wenn ich dieses Adverb in einem Word-Dokument verwende, empfiehlt mir das Computerprogramm, "relativ" zu entfernen.
Ich erinnere mich an einen Kommentar auf YT, der ein Video - es handelte sich um eine Autorezension - kritisierte, da der Sprecher immer das Wort "relativ" verwendete. Der Kommentar behauptete, der Sprecher klinge unprofessionell wegen der kontinuierlichen Benutzung dieses Adverbs.
Zusammendfassend kann man sagen, dass das Adverb "relativ" eine Art Füllwort ist? Soll ich es so häufig wie möglich vermeiden?
Ich danke euch für eure Aufmerksamkeit und macht euch keine Sorgen, diesen Text zu korrigieren. :)
My sister and I both remember the show, so I know its real.. But I only remember two episodes of it. A math one (Which I believe was in space, with a tennis ball looking alien), and the Reading/ words episode, which had the prison stripe gangster. There was a boy, a girl, and an old man Doctor character, and Doc went missing in the Words episode. The boy and girl (Whom I cant remember the names of) seek help from the encyclopedia, which was a book with a womans head inside it, that spoke, and helped with problems. I remember a song called "Adjectives and Adverbs" and other than that, I remember nothing. No names, no real plots.. I watched it in probably 98 on VHS, and want to relive the glory days. Thanks for your help!
After combing through various (and different) explanations on JP chigai sites, this site and other sites for this set of words and going by my instincts based on when I've heard them on the shows I watch, I came up with this attempt to categorize them. Do tell if you think it's wrong or it isn't (like many things) so black and white and people use them interchangeably as well.
いよいよ: Finally, after some increasing build up.
やっと and 漸く: Derived from the same root with 漸く being more formal sounding. Finally, after a lot of effort to make it happen.
とうとう: Finally, with emphasis on the final result. Often used with a negative result that was expected to happen.
遂に: Finally, just the use of the word as the natural course of things. No particular emphasis on the difficulty of the journey or the result, just that it follows the course of things.
What are your thoughts?
I was reading about correlative conjunctions and adverb clauses, and most of the examples they gave made sense, but some of these just seem really off to me. Do I need to accept and memorize these, or is the lack of commas optional?
> Even if it rains I will come.
> Though I am poor I am honest.
> Jonathan not only studies hard but he also works well at the office.
> Young as he is he occupies an important position in the firm.
And why does this one have a comma?
> I’m not only going to the gym, but also meeting the team!
Submitted by /u/LizMixSmoker.
Can you please explain to me why we need a comma before "within" and after " clause". Thank you
Hi all, so the question is: do you know of any recent literature ('recent' in a wide sense, preferably post-2000 literature) disputing the claim that floating quantifiers are adverbs (and also literature stating the exact opposite)? I am fairly well-acquainted with pre-2000 literature (especially on fqs=adverbs, so if there is pre-2000 lit not equating the two I'd be interested in that, too).
Hello. I'm learning about spatial adverbs, specifically "an", "in" and "auf". Sorry if its a bit long and basic.
TL;DR: How do you use "an", "in" and "auf".
I know for a fact you use Akk. for "wohin" and Dat for "wo", never the less i'm not very sure about when to use each adverb. So far I've gathered that when you're in a delimited area you use "in", if you are doing an action in that area you use "auf" and "an" is used when you use another place for reference.
A (according to me): Die kinder spielen auf der Wiese/ dem Park.
A (according to me): Sie wartet an dem Kaufhaus/ der Brücke/ dem Platz.
A (according to me): Er arbeitet in der Stadt/ dem Speisesaal.
Never the less there is this excercise I'm not really sure how to aproach
Because its "gehen" I assume it's "wohin", but im not sure whether it's "an" or "in"
A: Ich gehe in/an die Bank
It's "fahren" therefore "wohin", but again not sure if its "an" or "in"
A: Ich fahre in/an die Stadt.
Thank you for any kind of help you could provide me.
I blame Apple's 'Think Different' for triggering 20+ years of creatives mimicking its adjective-for-adverb mechanic in a stunning display of not thinking differently in any way. It seems to have had a tedious resurgence over the last few years, with lazy copywriters trotting it out for any old shit. So let's never drink, eat, sleep, drive or travel "happy" ever again.
>Vivo con mi esposa, Mónica, en un apartamento en el centro de la ciudad. También, trabajo para las Naciones Unidas y mi trabajo es mi afición/hobby.
>Vivo con mi esposa, Mónica, en un apartamento en el centro de la ciudad. Trabajo para las Naciones Unidas y también mi trabajo es mi afición/hobby.
Which one has correct placement of the word ”también”? I think both are correct, but I am not completely certain either. The placement provides emphasis in different places, that's the only difference?
I use too much adverbs when communicating. I don't know if theres something to do with being an INTJ but Id like to know how can I get rid of this vice of language.
This following sentence is part of my answer to a writing exercise in my textbook
> Zusammen sind sie nach Südamerika gefahren und drei Monate dort geblieben.
The corresponding sentence in the answer key reads
> Sie sind zusammen nach Südamerika gefahren und drei Monate dort geblieben.
This made me wonder if there are any rules that determine the placement of adverbs like
zusammen, and whether one is considered better writing than the other.
I can't find any source that explains this point, though it looks certainly possible as in the example below.
"Five years further on"
Here, the noun phrase "Five years" seems to adverbially modify the adverb "further".
So is it possible to use a noun phrase to adverbially modify an adverb? If possible, could you provide an example for explanation?
A. Stay close to me!
I think that, in sentence A, the prepositional phrase "to me" grammatically modifies the adverb "close", because without "close", "Stay to me!" isn't correct English.
Am I right?
If so, is it possible to use a prepositional phrase to modify an adverb like in A?
Could you make some examples then?
(And would you tell me whether you're a native English speaker or not if you haven't set up the flair yet?)
Thank you very much
Hear me out. Reading a tweet or thread where someone's written "like" to describe something as we all hear too often nowadays, forces your brain to re-read or read the text slower than you normally should have to to understand it. It's aggravating and grown adults should know better.
edit: You guys...I respectfully ask, seriously, just listen to your coworkers a little closer, the ones who do this. Hear how often people use the word, if it's anything how some of my coworkers you'll notice how many extra words it adds to the sentence that are completely useless. And in a professional workplace when college trained people do it, to bystanders it completely changes their credibility.
I'll admit I'm not a trained grammar professional but I've known enough people who are terrible conversationalists to know what makes good sentence structure.
I'm on my 3rd attempt trying to become fluent in German. Learning adverbs is kicking my ass.
I decided on trying Duolingo this time and the adverbs 2 unit has slowed me to a crawl. The da+conj adverbs (daher, damit, darüber, etc) confuse me.
The skill is gold in my tree now but I made so many mistakes that there was no way I should have got it.
Is it really down to just memorizing them or is there some general rule where they all make sense?
My short cut of just translating da as there/here, adding the translated conj, and trying to think of the closest English adverb is not working well.
So on the textbook that the teacher gave us we have to examples
I know where he lives ( where he lives is a noun clause functioning as object of verb to know).
He painted where he liked ( adverbial clause of place)
I just want to know whyyy???? Arent they the same? Why is one a noun clause and the other an adverbial
"He was so happy he ran all the way home."
"She was so happy, she ran all the way home."
In the first, he was overjoyed by the fact that he ran all the way home, and in the second, she ran all the way home because she was so happy. Are both sentences grammatically correct? Is there a rule of thumb regarding the usage of "so" as an adjective or adverb?
Hello I have this sentence and I have to add the adverb form of the word in the parentheses:
I’m against the death penalty because I consider it cruel. (essential)
This was my answer:
One of the correct answers was:
Now I wonder... Is my answer correct too?
For example, what is the difference between "You left me alone there" and "You left me alone in there"? How about "I want to stay home tonight" and "I want to stay at home tonight"?