S-Cool Revision Summary

S-Cool Revision Summary

Writers often use description in an attempt to allow their readers to imagine characters, moods and settings.

One way of making these descriptions effective is by appealing to the readers' senses. Your readers should be able to see and feel and taste the world you are describing.

Sight: A writer should aim at creating a kind of film of images running through a text, so that their readers can imagine themselves there.

Sound: Details of sounds can be particularly effective in creating atmosphere.

Smell: Our sense of smell is strongly linked to our memory. Smells can instantly conjure up a feel of a particular place or time.

Touch: For readers to believe in the world you are creating, it is important that this world is physical, that it has textures.

Alliteration is when two or more words in a line begin with the same letter or sound.

Onomatopoeia is when the sound of a word re-enforces its meaning. Words such as crash, slither, scrape, whizz, boom are onomatopoeic. They are words bursting with energy and liven up any writing.

You should adapt the length of your sentences to fit the subject you are describing.

Long sentences can be used to slow a description down to create a sense of relaxation or time dragging.

Short sentences are more punchy, quick and dynamic, and are good for describing dramatic events or action.

Rhythm: Repeated use of short sentences will create a choppy, staccato rhythm. Longer sentences will create a more fluid, fluent rhythm.

Sentences in which the subject is kept to the end are sometimes called suspenseful, because the reader has to wait to see who or what the subject is. These suspenseful sentences can be used to create effects.

Verbs are action words. They are the athletes of language and should be energetic and expressive. Selecting the right verb can bring a piece to life.

Using verbs together can also create a quick pace and a sense of excitement, especially if the previous sentences have been long and slow.

Vocabulary means your choice of words. To get a good grade it is essential that you chose your vocabulary, such as your verbs, carefully.

An adjective is a word that describes a noun.

A noun is a thing, a place or a name.

Three General Rules on using Adjectives:

  • Don't use two adjectives that mean the same thing. Find a better adjective instead.

  • Use one adjective per noun, unless you have a good reason.

  • Don't use words that intensify or weaken the adjective.

Similes are when you compare two things by saying that one is like the other.

A metaphor is a more concentrated form of simile, in which one thing is said to be the other.

Personification is a special type of metaphor where something that is not alive is given human emotions.

You are expected to use Standard English in all you English exams. This means not using slang, informal, chatty language, and making sure such things as your verbs are in agreement.

Only use non-standard forms when you are writing direct speech. That way the examiner can see that you're consciously adapting language to create specific effects.