What is a flat adverb?
When I heard a co-worker tell another co-worker who had just clocked out to "Drive safe!" I snootily thought to myself, That's not grammatically correct! It should be, "Drive safely!"
Are you thinking what I was--that all adverbs must end in -ly?
Adverbs are words that tell us how something is done: safely, quickly, carefully, etc. And they normally end in -ly.
However, it is actually grammatically correct to tell someone to "Drive safe!" (And it's also just downright nice.) That's because "safe" is a flat adverb. An adverb that doesn't end in -ly is called a flat adverb.
Of course, you could also wish that someone would "Drive safely," but why use a normal adverb when you could use a flat adverb?
From your pen to the reader's hands
As a book editor and publisher, I get this question a lot: "If I were to write a book, what steps would it go through to be published?"
Here is the big picture of how After the Rain Publishing LLC publishes books:
1. You write the manuscript, a fancy dancy term for your book before it is published.
2. We edit your manuscript. We correct spelling, grammar, and punctuation errors; replace blah words with punchier ones; remove distracting redundancies; make sure everything makes sense; ensure everything flows smoothly; and generally just make your manuscript sparkle, all while maintaining your voice and tone. Whew! That's a lot of work! But it's fun work! Our job is to make you look like the best author in the world, and after 10 years, we're pretty good at it.
3. A professional graphic designer designs a front and back cover for your book, including a spine if your book is thick enough. In the publishing world, a book is indeed judged by its cover, and our contract designers have real-world experience designing covers that will make your book sell.
4. We design the inside of your book. Using industry-standard software, we make sure chapter titles, page numbers, text, and other components line up and stand out, giving your book a professional look that causes your readers to see you as a credible, amazing author.
5. After getting your approval at every step, we upload your manuscript and cover files to the POD (print-on-demand) professional printer. When a customer orders your book, this printer prints it and mails it to the customer. Pretty slick, eh?
If you're thinking of writing a book, that is how it would be published with After the Rain Publishing! Drop us a line and let's get started on your masterpiece today!
When should you use passive sentences in your writing?
Decide when to use passive sentences.
People are talking a lot about passive income these days. Put in the work now and in a few weeks you could be making money in your sleep! What does passive income have to do with passive sentences?
Last time, we talked about the importance of using active sentences in your writing because, like prune juice, they tend to keep things moving. What is an active sentence? Here are some examples:
Patricia wrote a short story on her laptop last night.
Antonio bit into the green apple and immediately grimaced.
The squirrel darted up the startled tourist's pant leg!
Active sentences focus on action: Patricia wrote, Antonio bit, the squirrel darted.
But sometimes you want the reader to focus on a particular person or thing more than on the action. In this case, you want to place the emphasized word toward the beginning of the sentence, which often makes the sentence passive. Here are some examples:
The car in question was driven to the store by the defendant.
That candy bar, in all its decadence, was devoured by the custodian.
A process was begun that has developed into a fiasco.
This means what you're writing will have some passive sentences. No gasping necessary. This is actually a good thing, because a book, short story, or article with nothing but active sentences would be like a squirrel constantly darting up your pant leg.
A bit much.
Using mostly active sentences and sprinkling in some passive ones, will sparklefy your writing!