Use Strong Verbs

Overuse of adverbs (-ly words) is common among new and inexperienced writers. See the example below for ways to replace them with strong verbs. Using strong verbs instead of adverbs also assists in “showing” rather than “telling”.

“She’s definitely mine,” said Big Red aggressively.

“Admittedly, she had lunch with you in the same patch of orchard, but she recently told me it’s me she wants,” said Big Grey, raising his paws threateningly, lashing quickly at the larger kangaroo.


“Can you pair find somewhere else to strongly contest the lovely lady elsewhere,” asked Little Red tiredly. “We’re trying to nap here. You pair going at it noisily is interfering with my sleep.”

Compare:

“She’s belongs to me.” Big Red growled, planted his tail, and raised his paws.

“Yes. You ate lunch in the same patch of orchard. But, she sleeps with me. She wants me.” Big Grey, thrusts with his claws, slashing the larger roo’s chest.


“Come off it you two… find somewhere else to fight for the bitch,” Little Red yawned. “We’re trying to nap. Your brawling is interfering with my sleep.”