How to Write a Paragraph: 3 Essentials

th/bethwareham

Last night, I was editing. Not so exciting in itself except I was wearing a torn nightgown and eating Skittles. I got so tangled up in the paragraph of this manuscript, I cried out in anger and pain, pulling at my nightgown and sad I’d eaten all the candy.

So, let’s start at the very beginning, a very good place to start….

A paragraph is a building block of a book. Within that paragraph, there are three building blooms that make it a paragraph. Or at least an intelligible paragraph. If you practice, greatness comes.

  1. S.V.O. –  This is your sentence, baby: subject, verb, object. Never forget it and it will never let you down.

Let’s write our first sentence for the paragraph together:

Beth shot her husband.

Our subject is “Beth”, our verb is “shot” and our object is “her husband.”

2.  The remaining sentences in the paragraph are about the same subject as the first     sentence of the paragraph:

Beth shot her husband. The blast threw him back against the white wall in front of her desk. The gun’s roar wouldn’t leave her ears as she crossed the room. She leaned in. He was dead. The ringing stopped and her eyes traveled back up the wall. His blood left a wild dynamic spray.

3. The last sentence winds up the paragraph and sets up the next paragraph:

Beth shot her husband. The blast threw him back against the white wall in front of her desk. The gun’s roar wouldn’t leave her ears as she crossed the room. She leaned in. He was dead. The ringing stopped and her eyes traveled back up the wall. His blood left a wild dynamic spray. Finally, she thought, I got my Pollack. 

Now, you’re set up to write the next paragraph and the one after that and the one after that and the one after that and the after…..

And finally, you’ll have a book!

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