Emphasize Key Ideas. Experiment with techniques for emphasis

End sentences with kickers. You can withhold the important information until the final word.

With a great deal of kindness and hospitality, “Fat” Nick Minucci welcomed Glenn Moore to Brooklyn with a baseball bat to the head.

Periodic sentences

The periodic sentence creates emphasis by piling modifiers and descriptions before the main subject and verb:

Before she wrecked Christie Brinkley’s marriage, before she began a torrid affair with Brinkley’s philandering hubby Peter Cook, before Cook lured her from a dead- end toy store job to work in his architectural firm at double the salary, even before the toy gig, teen stunner Diana Bianchi wanted to be a pop singer.


Cumulative sentences begin with the subject and verb, then add modifiers:

Ex-supermodel Christie Brinkley discovered her husband was having a fling with a teenager who worked in his firm, a short walk from her home in the Hamptons, a place accustomed to spectacular affairs, but rarely one that generates this many juicy headlines, unless you take into account Brinkley’s divorce from singer Billy Joel.

Parallel structure for emphasis

Hardly had Wendi Deng, Rupert Murdock’s current wife, left China and started sleeping with married executive Jake Cherry, before she left Cherry and started sleeping with another man.

Use punctuation for emphasis

Use a dash or a colon for emphasis.

My trainer says if I spend two hours a day on the treadmill, and if I give up pasta—that is, if I torture myself—I will lose forty pounds.

At a corner table in Café Reggio, I anxiously awaited the arrival of my blind date: she was 300 pounds.

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