A band-aid as an analogyVivid images in your writing are the fastest way to give your readers that “aha!” moment of understanding. Common tools are analogies like metaphors and similes, which compare this new thing to that quite different thing.

  • A metaphor expresses the unfamiliar in terms of the familiar (“The river snakes its way…”).
  • A simile compares two unlike things, usually linked by like or as (“The river is like a snake…”).

I always read with an eye out for great analogies and expressive writing. The May issue of my newsletter, Wordnerdery, shares some recent finds, like this one:

“Focusing too tightly on the details in a report can cause teams to add many band-aids to a design that’s really suffering from a broken leg.” – Web usability expert Jakob Nielsen

Read more in the May issue!

Image: “gubgub” and FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Related reading:
‘Linguistic cicadas’ and other expressive writing, in the December 2014 issue
A shredder that ‘pooped confetti’ and more expressive writing, in the March 2014 issue
An ‘orthographical fig leaf’ and yet  more expressive writing, in June 2013 issue

Wordnerdery is a quick read about words, effective/expressive writing, newsletters and more. Are you a subscriber yet? If yes, thanks for reading! If not, you can sign up right now. In keeping with Canada’s anti-spam laws, you can easily unsubscribe any time. If you really must.