Your first senteces were short. They were simple. They had a subject. They had a verb. There could be an object. Sometimes, they included a comma. They were rarely longer than this.
Then, they began to become slightly more complex. They included more commas, adjectives, and other cool pieces from the world of grammar. They still weren’t too complex, were still relatively simple, but they were growing in length.
And then the real fun began, as you tested just how long your sentences could become, just how much you could fit into one thought, just how much you could do with a single phrase, and you quickly learned: there was a lot.
But then your sentences became run-on sentences and you knew you’d gone too far because they never stopped and you couldn’t pause because there was no place to pause because it just kept going and you didn’t know what to do and you knew you’d gone too far and you had to find a way to make it stop.
So you reverted back to the simple.
Now, before you start calling me a hypocrite, I’m not saying simple is bad. In fact, quite the opposite is true. Simple is just as important to writing as complex. However, you need to understand that both are important, not just one or the other.
Don’t believe me? I’ll break it down for you.
You need to vary your sentence length. Good writing always has varied sentence length. Sentences of the same length get boring. There’s no rhythm or depth to them. Your words get wishy washy and blur. You know I’m getting boring right now. My sentences are all the same length. It’s already way past repetitive and monotonous. You probably hate me right about now.
See what I mean?
There’s a certain depth that comes with varied sentence length. It creates a rhythm, a texture, and turns every word you write into poetry. It creates life. And, as a writer, giving your words life is the most important part.
So, to better your writing, play with sentence length. Try using short quips for sharp impacts. Or use a long, flowing sentence to add beauty and texture to your writing. Just make sure to use a mix of long, short, and medium sentence lengths.
This really is one of the quickest and easiest ways to better your writing. Seriously, just try it! You’ll start to notice the difference immediately.
And if something goes crazy or wrong… Don’t give up. Mistakes are how we learn. Just keep trying, and eventually you’ll get it right.
You’ll be a master in no time!