wr0. Course introduction
wr1. Writing fundamentals
wr1-0. Introduction :29
wr1-1. Chose simple words :54
wr1-2. More verbs less adjectives :33
wr1-3. Use the present tense 1:05
wr1-4. Compound your sentences :25
wr1-5. Keep paragraphs short:29
wr1-6. Use the past tense 1:13
wr1-7. Review :56
wr2. Planning your message
wr2-0. Introduction: 1:06
wr2-1. Start with the ending: :36
wr2-2. Now start your beginning :19
wr2-3. Adjusting the middle 1:01
wr2-4. Captions add picture value 1:15
wr2-5. Headlines attract readers :44
wr2-6. Review 1:07
wr3. Writing with purpose
wr3-0. Introduction :37
wr3-1. Feature you 1:29
wr3-2. A short video script :47
wr3-3. Press release 1:26
wr3-4. Business cover letter 1:33
wr3-5. Instruction manual 1:18
wr3-6. Review :33
wr4. No this
wr4-0. Introduction 1:12
wr4-1. No alphabet soup 1:11
wr4-2. No abbreviations :45
wr4-3. No contractions :46
wr4-4. No slang and no swearing 2:19
wr4-5. No misspelling :56
wr4-6. Never misspell names :50
wr4-7. Review :38
wr1-6. Use the past tense
In a previous lesson, you learned to use the present tense, even when writing about something in the past.
The purpose is to create a sense of urgency like this is happening now. That works in short bits. But you don’t want to overdo it. If most of your story happened in the past, use the past tense.
However, there is a way to combine past and present benefits. Use two verbs to describe your action, one in the past and the present.
Example. I was eating lunch when the phone rang.
That is a writing technique to keep the past in the present.
Sample from the feature story "The Man Who Invented Las Vegas"
Written by Harris Gaffin
Yet he, too, had a vision... for a small, inhospitable cattle town set in the scorching wastes of the Nevada Desert, a place called Las Vegas.
His mission was to turn this dusty dump into a glitzy adult resort that would lure movie stars and high rollers alike.
"You're outa your mind, Ben," warned one cynical brother hoodlum. "You'll have to furnish camels to get the suckers out there."
wr1-6. Write a page in the past tense about anything in the pictures above.