Fun Functions for Conjunctions
Updated: Jan 27
This week, we're going to play! Let's make someone shout into the wind. Let's make someone else ponder his place in the universe. We can create a ship's captain who barks out orders and a space scientist who is mystified by a startling discovery. To do this, we'll want to take advantage of two fabulous literary devices:
POLYSYNDETON & ASYNDETON
These two devices work with conjunctions. So, today's quick review of that will help. First, remember that we think in words, and most of us string our words into sentences. For example:
Beth wrote an article.
This simple little sentence comes in two parts:
Clause (a subject & verb): Beth wrote
Phrase (everything else): an article
Now, what if I did more than that one task? For example:
Beth wrote an article and a press release.
That "and" is a conjunction that glues the press release into my phrase. There are three types of conjunctions: Coordinate, Subordinate, and Correlative conjunctions.
This week, we want to play with coordinating conjunctions.
Coordinating conjunctions connect two words or groups of words that are pretty much equal in the sentence. The article and the press release are both pretty equal in my day's workload. So, I'm just gluing them together in the sentence with "and" ... a coordinating conjunction. Easy!
Here are the seven coordinating conjunctions: for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so
To recall them all, simply remember their first letters: FANBOYS (for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so)
Examples of all our FANBOYS:
The prince has a palace, for he is royalty.
His mom washed clothes, fixed dinner, and wrote a novel.
Neither her parents nor her boyfriend own an airplane.
She loves turkey sandwiches but hates tuna.
Does Sheila ride a bicycle or a motorbike to work?
He listed all the facts, yet the audience didn't respond.
He passed the test, so he got the job.
Here's where you have choices. You can use it in standard grammatical ways that will make your English teacher proud. This is great for most business correspondence and college essays. Beyond that, a writer might choose to use many conjunctions or none at all. In these choices, the practiced writer can create a voice, build plot, and define characters.
SMARTIES NOTE: SYNDETON MEANS USING A CONJUNCTION WORD TO GLUE IDEAS TOGETHER. They could be two words, phrases, or even clauses.
PRACTICE, PRACTICE, AND PRACTICE SOME MORE
Be sure to look for my next blog post, coming in a few days! We're going to use today's conjunction tools to create fabulous characters, settings and scenes. You'll need to know how to glue your thoughts together, so go ahead, play with those conjunctions. Soon you'll be able to use FANBOYS to boost your number of fans!