Monday, May 03, 2010

Weekly writing coach: One sentence

With thanks to writer Susan Parker for sharing this site on Twitter, let me recommend your practice this week consist of one sentence--but what a sentence.  The One Sentence site bills itself as "true stories, told in one sentence."  Here's a sampling:

When I was standing on the subway platform telling the particle physics joke to my roommate, I fell in love with the stranger that jumped in with the punchline.

I've learned to deal with rejection letters, but it's just not right to open one and get a papercut.

He didn't realize that fruit suspended in jello was considered a salad until we visited my grandparents in Wisconsin.
Each of these one-sentence stories packs a punch and more. The best examples move action forward, offer perspective, contain a surprise, and defy prediction and second-guessing because they're original.

Now: Can you try this tactic with some writing you're doing for work, rather than a novel or memoir?  See whether you can pack a sentence with that much verve and vigor.  Then submit it on One Sentence, or here, in the comments.

UPDATE:  Communications consultant Liz Wainger took this idea and imagined what some prominent businesses might do with one dense-packed sentence.  Here's here take.  What do you think?

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