One of my favorite books by Cynthia Rylant is An Angel for Solomon Singer. I love the unapologetic way she weaves the story of a lonely man’s life. Her words are simple and direct and beautiful. Several places in the book Rylant describes her character by what he doesn’t have or doesn’t like which is a technique that kids can imitate and will quickly change up the flow of their writing and add voice to their pieces. It is also a way of describing that young writers can use when writing across genres and in all content areas.
The following sentences are Cynthia Rylant’s:
His room had no balcony (he dreamed of beautiful balconies). It had no fireplace (and he knew he would think better sitting before a fireplace). It had no porch swing for napping and no picture for watching the birds.
The following are sentences I generated using Rylant’s words as inspiration:
Her office had no window (she dreamed of the warmth of natural light). It had no way to control the temperature (and she knew she would think better without shivering). It had no filing cabinet and no bookcase for all of her books.