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Spellbinding Sentences by Barbara Baig

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Chapter 10

Making Spells: The Magic of Sentences

Thus I got into my bones the essential structure of the ordinary British sentence—which is a noble thing.

—Winston Churchill

In arriving at sentences, we have come to the heart of the craft of writing, to the place where writing differs from ordinary conversation. In the rush of daily life we often talk in phrases. If your spouse asks, Where’s my book? you can reply, On the table, and your meaning will be clear. But while such fragments have their place in speech, and even in some informal writing, they don’t allow us to make complete statements. And making complete statements is what sentence expertise is all about.

So, once we’ve learned how to choose words and combine them into phrases, we now ...

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