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Painting Pictures With Your Words. The Describer's Tools. Figurative Language Similes Metaphors Personification Adjectives Adverbs Visual Verbs Absolute Phrases. Figurative Language. Personification-Giving human qualities to something non-human

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the describer s tools
The Describer's Tools
  • Figurative Language
    • Similes
    • Metaphors
    • Personification
  • Adjectives
  • Adverbs
  • Visual Verbs
  • Absolute Phrases

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figurative language
Figurative Language
  • Personification-Giving human qualities to something non-human
    • The wind stood up and gave a shout.He whistled on his fingers andKicked the withered leaves aboutAnd thumped the branches with his handAnd said he'd kill and kill and kill,And so he will and so he will.(James Stephens, "The Wind")

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figurative language1
Figurative Language
  • Simile-comparison between two unlike things, using a word of similiarity (“like” “as”)
    • "She dealt with moral problems as a cleaver deals with meat."(James Joyce, "The Boarding House")
    • "Matt Leinart slid into the draft like a bald tire on black ice."(Rob Oller, Columbus Dispatch, Feb. 25, 2007)

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slide5
Metaphor-comparisons of two unlike things that don't use "like" or "as“
    • “a sea of troubles”
    •  “All the world's a stage” (Shakespeare)

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adjectives
Adjectives
  • Modify nouns and pronouns
  • Sometimes the ice is black and glossy, blasted smooth by the endless wind with only a few swaths of snow lying on it…Sometimes it is rigid and buckled from the enormous strains of the wind, the currents, and the line of advancing bergs.

(Richard Brown, Voyage of the Ice Berg)

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adverbs
Adverbs
  • Modify verbs, adjectives, and other adverbs
    • "You're not the sharpest knife in the drawer," she said cuttingly. 
    • "I love pillows," he said softly. 
    • "I invented the light bulb!" Edison said brightly.
    • She had to hurry, but she had to hurry slowly, in order not to make a sound." -- The Higher Power of Lucky by Susan Patron

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visual verbs
Visual Verbs
  • Example: The man ran quickly.
  • Corrected Example: The man sprinted.
  • Example:
  • "Doris walked silently through the pitch black of the deserted, empty house, fingers pushing lightly on each closed door.” 
  • Corrected: "Doris crept through the blackness of the deserted house, fingertips pressing on each closed door.”
  • Example: “Matt, one of the biggest men you could imagine, walked heavily through the antique store, while Jessie's eyes looked quickly at each item left quivering in his wake. “
  • Corrected: “Matt's behemoth form lumbered through the antique store, while Jessie's eyes darted to each item left quivering in his wake. “

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absolutes

Absolutes!

Phrases that Zoom!

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absolutes the phrases that zoom
AbsolutesThe Phrases that Zoom!
  • Absolute (Defined…)
    • a group of words consisting of a noun or pronoun and a participle as well as any related modifiers.
      • modify the entire sentence
      • adding information
      • Set off from rest of sentence by a comma
      • No conjunction

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absolutes the phrases that zoom1
AbsolutesThe Phrases that Zoom!
  • Lance Armstrong raced his bike across the bridge, his hands gripping the handlebars tightly. (Big picture, Armstrong racing his bike; Zoom, his hands)
  • His fists snapping gracefully, Ali danced around Sonny Liston. (Big picture, Ali dancing around Liston; Zoom, his arms snapping punches)
  • The mountain lion hid crouched its in the grass, its tail twitching from side to side. (Big picture, lion crouching in grass; Zoom, tail twitching)

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absolutes the phrases that zoom2
AbsolutesThe Phrases that Zoom!
  • Big Picture:
  • Fran Tarkenton celebrated the win.

Zoom:

his arms raised in victory

New Sentence:

Fran Tarkenton celebrated the win, his arms raised in victory.

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absolutes the phrases that zoom3
AbsolutesThe Phrases that Zoom!

Big Picture:

The skyscraper reached into the heavens.

Zoom:

It’s windows reflecting the blue sky and white clouds.

New Sentence:

The skyscraper reached into the heavens, its windows reflecting the blue sky and white clouds.

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absolutes the phrases that zoom4

Face grimacing

  • Hands gripping
  • Feet pedaling
AbsolutesThe Phrases that Zoom!

Big Picture:

Lance Armstrong raced through the streets of Italy.

Zoom:

New Sentence:

Face grimacing, hands gripping, feet pedaling, Lance Armstrong raced through the streets of Italy.

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absolutes the phrases that zoom5
AbsolutesThe Phrases that Zoom!
  • Notice:
    • Absolutes are set off from the rest of a sentence by a comma:
      • Fran Tarkenton celebrated the win, his arms raised in victory.
      • The skyscraper reached into the heavens, its windows reflecting the blue sky and white clouds.
    • Absolutes can be moved within the sentence
      • Fran Tarkenton celebrated the win, his arms raised in victory.
      • His arms raised in victory, Fran Tarkenton celebrated the win,

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absolutes the phrases that zoom6
AbsolutesThe Phrases that Zoom!

Big Picture:

Zoom:

New Sentence:

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