Analogies and Metaphors Supposedly Found in High School Essays
Her face was a perfect oval, like a circle that had its two
sides gently compressed by a Thigh Master.
His thoughts tumbled in his head, making and breaking alliances
like underpants in a dryer without Cling Free.
He spoke with the wisdom that can only come from experience,
like a guy who went blind because he looked at a solar eclipse
without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it and now goes
around the country speaking at high schools about the dangers of
looking at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a
pinhole in it.
She grew on him like she was a colony of E. coli and he was
room-temperature Canadian beef.
She had a deep, throaty, genuine laugh, like that sound a dog
makes just before it throws up.
Her vocabulary was as bad as, like, whatever.
He was as tall as a six-foot-three-inch tree.
The revelation that his marriage of 30 years had disintegrated
because of his wife's infidelity came as a rude shock, like a
surcharge at a formerly surcharge-free ATM.
The little boat gently drifted across the pond exactly the way a
bowling ball wouldn't.
McBride fell 12 stories, hitting the pavement like a Hefty bag
filled with vegetable soup.
From the attic came an unearthly howl.
The whole scene had an eerie, surreal quality, like when you're
on vacation in another city and Jeopardy comes on at 7:00 p.m.
instead of 7:30.
Her hair glistened in the rain like a nose hair after a sneeze.
The hailstones leaped from the pavement, just like maggots when
you fry them in hot grease.
Long separated by cruel fate, the star-crossed lovers raced
across the grassy field toward each other like two freight
trains, one having left Cleveland at 6:36 p.m. traveling at 55
mph, the other from Topeka at 4:19 p.m. at a speed of 35 mph.
They lived in a typical suburban neighborhood with picket fences
that resembled Nancy Kerrigan's teeth.
John and Mary had never met. They were like two hummingbirds who
had also never met. He fell for her like his heart was a mob
informant and she was the East River.
Even in his last years, Grandpappy had a mind like a steel trap,
only one that had been left out so long, it had rusted shut.
The plan was simple, like my brother-in-law Phil. But unlike
Phil, this plan just might work.
The young fighter had a hungry look, the kind you get from not
eating for a while.
"Oh, Jason, take me!" she panted, her breasts heaving like a
college freshman on $1-a-beer night.
He was as lame as a duck. Not the metaphorical lame duck,
either, but a real duck that was actually lame. Maybe from
stepping on a land mine or something.
The ballerina rose gracefully en pointe and extended one slender
leg behind her, like a dog at a fire hydrant.
He was deeply in love. When she spoke, he thought he heard
bells, as if she were a garbage truck backing up.
It was an American tradition, like a father chasing around his
children with power tools.
She was as easy as the TV Guide crossword.
She walked into my office like a centipede with 98 missing legs.
It hurt the way your tongue hurts after you accidentally staple
it to the wall.
Fumblerules of Writing
Much of this list was originally compiled by George L. Trigg, et al
1. Make sure each pronoun agrees with their antecedent.
2. Just between you and I, the case of pronouns is important.
3. Watch out for irregular verbs that have crope into English.
4. Verbs has to agree in number with their subjects.
5. Don't use no double negatives.
6. And don't start a sentence with a conjunction.
7. The passive voice is to be ignored.
8. Never use a big word when substituting a diminutive one would suffice.
9. Kill all exclamation points!!!
10. Use words correctly, irregardless of how others use them.
11. Prepositions are not words to end sentences with.
12. Being bad grammar, a writer should not use dangling modifiers.
13. Join clauses good like a conjunction should.
14. A writer must not shift your point of view.
15. About sentence fragments.
16. One-word sentences? Eliminate.
17. Don't use run-on sentences you have to punctuate them.
18. In letters essays and reports use commas to separate items in a series.
19. Don't use commas, that are not necessary.
20. Also, always avoid annoying alliteration.
21. Go around the barn at high noon to avoid colloquialisms.
22. Parenthetical words however should be enclosed in commas. Also, parenthetical remarks (however relevant) are (usually) unnecessary.
23. Its important to use apostrophes right in everybodys writing.
24. If you've heard it once, you've heard it a thousand times: Resist hyperbole; not one writer in a million can use it correctly. Exaggeration is a billion times worse than understatement.
25. Understatement is always the absolute best way to put forth earth-shaking ideas.
26. Avoid ampersands & abbreviations, etc.
27. Who needs rhetorical questions?
28. Avoid "buzz-words." Such integrated transitional scenarios complicate simplistic matters.
29. One should NEVER generalize.
30. Be more or less specific.
31. Puns are for children, not groan readers.
32. Proofread carefully to see if you any words out.
33. Foreign words and phrases are not apropos.
34. Analogies in writing are like feathers on a snake.
35. Eliminate quotations. As Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "I hate quotations. Tell me what you know."
36. In the case of a report, check to see that, jargonwise, it's A-OK.
37. As far as incomplete constructions, they are wrong.
38. About repetition, the repetition of a word might be real effective repetition—take, for instance the repetition of the name Abraham Lincoln.
39. Also too, never, ever use repetitive redundancies.
40. In my opinion, I think that an author when he is writing should definitely not get into the habit of making use of too many unnecessary words that he does not really need in order to put his message across.
41. Use parallel construction not only to be concise but also clarify.
42. It behooves us all to avoid archaic expressions.
43. Mixed metaphors are a pain in the neck and ought to be weeded out. Even if a mixed metaphor sings, it should be derailed.
44. Consult the dictionery to avoid mispelings.
45. To ignorantly split an infinitive is a practice to religiously avoid.
46. Avoid clichés like the plague. (They're old hat.)
47. Eschew obfuscation!
"Ending a sentence with a preposition is something up with which I shall not put."
Insults with class
"He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire."
— Winston Churchill
"I have never killed a man, but I have read many obituaries with great pleasure."
— Clarence Darrow
"He has never been known to use a word that might send a reader to the dictionary."
— William Faulkner (about Ernest Hemingway)
"I've had a perfectly wonderful evening. But this wasn't it."
— Groucho Marx
"I didn't attend the funeral, but I sent a nice letter saying I approved of it."
— Mark Twain
"He has no enemies, but is intensely disliked by his friends."
— Oscar Wilde
"I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play. Bring a friend, if you have one."
— George Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill
"Cannot possibly attend first night, will attend second, if there is one."
"I feel so miserable without you, it's almost like having you here."
— Stephen Bishop
"He is a self-made man and worships his creator."
— John Bright
"I've just learned about his illness. Let's hope it's nothing trivial."
— Irvin S. Cobb
"He is not only dull himself, he is the cause of dullness in others."
— Samuel Johnson
"He is simply a shiver looking for a spine to run up."
— Paul Keating
"He had delusions of adequacy."
— Walter Kerr
"Why do you sit there looking like an envelope without any address on it?"
— Mark Twain
"His mother should have thrown him away and kept the stork."
— Mae West
"Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go."
— Oscar Wilde
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