How To Write Sentences

How to write sentences is one of the early things we learn in English; the term sentence is one of the very first terms we hear when we begin learning the English language. In fact, a few words woven together can create a meaning, which leads to the birth of a sentence in English.

What is a Sentence? Sentences are smaller bits of their parents: the paragraphs. That means sentences form the most basic chunk of your prose. A sentence is self-sufficient when written correctly. It conveys a thought, message, question or an idea which is complete in its whole sense. Sentences can be anything from simplistic, to very complex. They can be short or long.

There are even one worded sentences.

Examples of how to write sentences:

John ate.
Gina plays table tennis every Saturday at noon.

All the above are valid when it comes to good sentences.

What makes a Sentence? A Subject and a Predicate are needed to make a self-sufficient sentence. Subject: What a sentence is talking about. Predicate: The “talk” about the subject. Let’s see few quick pointers and examples on subject and predicate:

Subject Predicate
Noun Verb Noun Pronoun Adjective Adverb

Subject Predicate
Pronoun Verb Noun Pronoun Adjective Adverb

Subject Predicate
Noun Phrase Verb Noun Pronoun Adjective Adverb
This boyislazy
That manexplainedcars
Those dogsarefast

As you can see in these simple sentences, a subject can be a noun, a pronoun or a phrase. A predicate can be a verb, a noun, a pronoun, an adjective or an adverb.

Another pointer:
Every sentence has a clause. A clause can be a word or a collection of many words with a subject and a predicate. A clause can be standalone or dependent. As the name suggests, a standalone clause is an independent part of a sentence called a Main Clause.

1. She could not go to school because it was raining.
2. Affluent people, who have lots of money to spare, live in that area.

The blue part is the main clause; the rest of the sentence is a dependent clause, or a Subordinate Clause.

What to take care of while writing Sentences? There are few commonly made errors when you write a sentence. Let’s explore:- Sentence fragments- Run-on sentences- Subject-verb disagreements

Sentence fragments occur when you write sentences that is incomplete. These sentences don’t convey any meaning by themselves.

Since we were leaving early.

You cannot make out anything from this sentence, and your reader waits for more to come.

Since we were leaving early, we offered her a ride.

Now, it is complete and error-free.

Run-on sentences are ones with a running together of more than one central idea. They are two or more sentences separated by commas instead of periods (full-stops.)

I went to Europe backpacking, there were two others with me, I loved the place because of its breath-taking beauty, we are planning another Euro-trip!

It is better to separate the above sentences and replace commas with periods (full-stops) to make them readable and error-free.

Subject-verb disagreements occur when singular subjects don’t have singular verbs, and/or plural subjects don’t have plural verbs. This gets particularly difficult to maintain when there’s a clause/phrase between subject and verb.


Error: The old clothes in the closet needs to be removed.
Corrected: The old clothes in the closet need to be removed.

Error: This box or those boxes is his.
Corrected: This box or those boxes are his.

Being careful about the above errors, and keeping in mind the basics of how to write sentences, you can create writing that can match the words of any good writer!

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