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Adding Emphasis

Not all thoughts are equal. You don’t expect your readers to remember everything that you write, but you hope that they’ll remember your key ideas.

You can emphasize your main points with formatting and writing techniques.

Inversion

Sentences usually follow a subject-verb-object order. You can add emphasis by using the shock factor of changing up or inverting that order.

Normal: I never expected to be a million dollar blogger.

Inverted: Never did I expect to be a million dollar blogger.

The inverted sentence brings part of the verb “did” before the subject “I”. Writing all your sentences in this style would be ridiculous, but when you do it once per copy, it stands out.

Repetition

No one wants to read repetitive writing. Often, looking for synonyms and varying sentence structure is the best choice, but when you want to emphasize something, repetition can be your best friend.

Example: Made with extra cream and extra cocoa, you’ll love our extra tasty deluxe hot chocolate.

Parallel Structure

Parallel structure is similar to repetition, but focuses on phrases and sentences instead of individual words. Always check your subheaders for parallel structure.

Your subheaders should all start in the same way, whether that’s with verbs, nouns, numbers, or the same letter. In this lesson, my subheaders are all nouns.

If I start the next subheader with a verb, it will stand out awkwardly.

Also check for parallel structure within sentences.

Not parallel: Omar likes reading, writing, and to surf the web.

Parallel: Omar likes reading, writing, and surfing the web.

Parallel: Omar likes to read, write, and surf the web.

See how clunky the non-parallel sentence is compared with the other two? Using the same form of verbs works much better.

Subordination

Subordination is a way to not emphasize something. Dependent clauses are also called subordinate clauses because the ideas in them are less important than those in the independent clause.

You can emphasize your important ideas by putting them in an independent clause and putting less important ideas in a dependent clause.

It’s also best to put your main idea at the end of the sentence.

Less effective: Yuka writes hilarious tweets, although she never got good grades on her essays.

More effective: Although she never got good grades on her essays, Yuka writes hilarious tweets.

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