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Feb 13, 2019 04:12:58

Parallel ideas and structure in writing

by @davidnge | 248 words | 🐣 | 104💌

David nge

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There's something odd about this sentence:

James is quiet, friendly, studious, loves drinking tea and goes jogging every morning.

Why does the sentence sound odd?

It's because the ideas are not parallel.

We're mixing James' attribute with the activities he likes to do.

We can rephrase the sentence as such:

James is a quiet, friendly and studious man who loves drinking tea and goes jogging every morning.

Here we're separating the attributes and the activities so the ideas are parallel.

We should also construct our sentences the same way.

When we're introducing a list of things, we should use the same grammatical structure:

Not parallel: 

Sam is responsible for stocking merchandise, writing orders for delivery, and sales of computers.

Parellel

Sam is responsible for stocking merchandise, writing orders for delivery, and selling computers.

Not Parallel:

The dictionary can be used to find these: word meanings, pronunciations, correct spellings, and looking up irregular verbs.

Parallel:

The dictionary can be used to find these: word meanings, pronunciations, correct spellings, and irregular verbs.

Not Parallel:

Successful students are motivated, punctual, and they listen actively in class.

Parallel:

Successful students are motivated, punctual, and attentive in class.

Not Parellel:

Gordon bought a stainless steel watch and a necklace made of white gold.

Parallel:

Gordon bought a stainless steel watch and a white gold necklace.

Not Parallel:

Kittens are adorable because they are tiny and the fur they have is so fluffy.

Parallel:

Kittens are adorable because they are tiny and fluffy.

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