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Sentence structures

Like all new writers, I sought out advice and listened to every helpful tip about how to make my sentences clear, my writing more better.

And there is no shortage of advice out there. Rules to follow, rules to break, style guides and grammar guides. Be like Hemmingway they say, and omit needless words (editing drunk is terrible btw); Faulkner is too wordy, and forget about Joyce as anyone who says they finished Ulysses is lying.

And so I chopped away until the pieces of prose were laid bare, and then restrung them (without semicolons for they are the Devil winking at you) and assumed my writing was getting gooder.

Then an interesting moment occurred. It was late 2016 and I was coming to the end of a year 9 English unit on short story writing. My students had all completed drafts, and I was talking them through the arduous process of darling-killing when the inevitable question came: 'Show us your work,' said one, and the others quickly joined the chorus, no doubt hoping at le…

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