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Write Cook

           Writing tools, tips, and tricks!


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Spice It Up with Rhetorical Devices

Posted on December 7, 2013 at 1:23 PM Comments comments (0)
Dear students, parents, and teachers,

There are only a couple of weeks left before the holiday break. It's a great time to try out spicy rhetorical devices in your writing. Read the following document and imitate the examples. You could also practice by using the devices in sensory descriptions and short poems. Have fun with this!


Teachers: a great book on rhetorical devices is Pyrotechnics on the Pageby Ralph Fletcher:

Need more examples? Here are three awesome writers who use a lot of rhetorical devices:

Roald Dahl (James and the Giant Peach, Matilda, others)

Catherynne M. Valente (The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making, others)

Ray Bradbury (Something Wicked This Way Comes, others) 

Happy writing and happy holidays!

Write Cook

Getting Ready and Inspired to Write

Posted on November 5, 2013 at 11:15 AM Comments comments (0)
Dear students, teachers, and parents,

November is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). I think it's also a great month for creating a writer's notebook (or notebooks), examining the writing process, and reading about writing. Take a look at the following documents: 



And here are a few books that will get you inspired to write:

My Name Is Mina by David Almond

Shakespeare Bats Cleanup by Ron Koertge

Breathing In, Breathing Out: Keeping a Writer's Notebook by Ralph Fletcher (and other books on writing by Ralph Fletcher)

What's Your Story? by Marion Dane Bauer

Look for these books in your local library, and have fun writing about whatever you want to this month.

Wishing you a bounteous Thanksgiving!

Write Cook

"Ghost Girl: The Story of Jamie Jones"

Posted on October 5, 2013 at 6:03 PM Comments comments (7)
Dear students, parents, and teachers,
October is National Bullying Prevention Month:
Interested in a story that addresses the problem of bullying in schools? My short story "Ghost Girl: The Story of Jamie Jones" is now available as an ebook through the Amazon Kindle Store (for only 99 cents).
Here's the blurb:
One tragedy after another befalls eleven-year-old Jamie. To make things worse, the class bully and her gang are picking on her. What Jamie needs and wants most of all in the world is a friend, but will she ever find one? And who will put a stop to the terrible bullying that's going on at her school?

Read this ghost story and find out what happened to Jamie Jones.
Much love,
Write Cook

Writing about Spooky or Scary Experiences

Posted on October 2, 2013 at 3:31 PM Comments comments (0)
Hello students, parents, and teachers,
October is the perfect month to write and share spooky stories. Here are a few resources to help you write a personal narrative about a spooky or scary experience:
1- Learn about the elements and the structure of a narrative and read a sample story:
The Narrative (PDF — 188 KB)
Chasing Iguanas PN (PDF — 108 KB)
2- Your first planning step will be to brainstorm ideas (incidents) for your story:
Incident Brainstorming (PDF — 52 KB)
3- Then, plan the setting and the characters:
Planning the Setting (PDF — 20 KB)
Planning Characters (PDF — 110 KB)
4- After that, decide how you'll "hook" the reader:
Ideas for Hooks (PDF — 52 KB)
5- Finally, identify the climax and organize the main events on a plot diagram:
PN Plot Diagram (PDF — 37 KB)
6- It's time to write the rough draft. Get in the "writing zone" by picturing your planned story as you write it (like watching a movie in your head and writing it down). Don't worry about spelling, mechanics, or grammar at this point.
Narrative Rough Draft (PDF — 122 KB)
7- Then, revise and edit (my favorite step!). The following documents will help:
Narrative Checklists (PDF — 56 KB)
Revising the Narrative (PDF — 1 MB)
8- You're now ready to write your final draft! And how about adding an illustration?
9- Take a final look at your finished product (or have someone else do it). Fix any spelling, punctuation, or capitalization mistakes.
10- Make sure to share your story with family and friends. Be proud of your accomplishment!
Happy Halloween!

Write Cook


Posted on September 2, 2013 at 8:30 PM Comments comments (0)
Dear middle school students, teachers, and parents,

I will be posting writing tips and resources during the first week of each school month.

This month (September) the topic is paragraphs.

1- Here's a great website that contains a variety of free resources for writing paragraphs:

2- The following website lets you download many documents on teaching paragraph writing:

3- Here's my own document on paragraphs:

4- And last, but not least, a paragraph assessment for teachers to use all year long:

5x5 Revision Game (PDF — 93 KB)

Happy writing,

Write Cook

P.S. Visit my Teachers Pay Teachers store and look for the printable/reproducible document titled "Paragraphs - Basic Structure" (only $2.50) and the free "Hamburger Paragraph" graphic organizers.

Sentence Fluency

Posted on August 26, 2013 at 10:18 PM Comments comments (0)
Hello, students, teachers, and parents,

This will be the last grammar review lesson of the summer. Some of you started school today and some of you will start school next week. I hope this summer review has prepared all of you to begin the school year with self-assurance and motivation.

So far you've studied the parts of speech and the basics of sentence construction. Today you'll take a look at sentence fluency: writing sentences that are varied in length and structure and that flow smoothly from one to the next.

First, read and study the following document.


Then, write a paragraph about something special that happened to you this summer. It can be about something happy or sad, spooky or dangerous, or exciting or embarrassing. Make sure your sentences are varied in length and structure and that they flow smoothly from one to the next. 

When you finish your paragraph, revise it for word choice: substitute generic nouns for precise nouns, bland verbs for vivid verbs, and add artful adjectives, smart adverbs, and interesting prepositional phrases. 

Finally, read your paragraph aloud to make sure that it's fluent and that your word choices work well.

And that's all folks!

I wish you all a fun and successful school year.

Write Cook

Sentence Parts and Sentence Construction

Posted on August 19, 2013 at 7:51 PM Comments comments (0)
Hello, students, teachers, and parents,

This week we will review sentence parts and sentence construction with the help of Mr. Morton from 

Go to:

Watch the PPT lessons and complete the worksheets that go with each lesson:

Subjects, Predicates, and Objects Lesson PPT

1- Subjects, Objects, and Predicates with Pirates Worksheet

2- Subjects, Predicates, and Objects Worksheet

3- Subjects, Predicates, and Objects Worksheet 2

4- Subjects and Predicates Worksheet   

5- Compound Subjects and Predicates Worksheet 

Clauses Lesson PPT

Clauses and Phrases Lesson PPT

1- Clauses Worksheet

2- Joining Clauses and the Circus

3- Ninjas! – Independent and Dependent Clauses

4- Clauses and Phrases Worksheets

Four Sentence Types Lesson PPT 

1- Four Sentence Type Worksheets

2- Sentence Types Worksheet 

Simple, Compound, and Complex Sentences Lesson PPT

1- Creating Compound Sentences

2- Creating Complex Sentences

More practice:

1- Fragments and Run-On Sentences 1

2- Fragments and Run-On Sentences 2

Next week we will review sentence fluency.

Make sure to do something fun this week -- only two weeks left of summer break! (Even less for some!)

Write Cook

For Teachers

Posted on August 15, 2013 at 1:30 PM Comments comments (0)
The new school year is about to begin, and teachers are getting classrooms ready and preparing awesome lesson plans. all you need to get started on the right foot. What's new in my store? Price cuts and new products, including free graphic organizers. Check it out!
Much love,
Write Cook
A sample product from my store:

Reviewing Sentence Structure

Posted on August 14, 2013 at 10:52 AM Comments comments (0)
Hello, students, parents, and teachers,

This week you'll be reviewing what you've learned about sentence structure.

First, go to and try out their Free Resources for Sentence Writing, especially their printable worksheets:

Next, find a favorite book (check it out of the library if you don't have it at home) and do a sentence scavenger hunt. Search for:

simple sentences

compound sentences

complex sentences

Finally, use the sentences you found as models for writing your own sentences.

Have fun with this!

Happy writing,

Write Cook

P.S. Time to start shopping for school supplies! :)

Different Types of Sentences

Posted on August 6, 2013 at 9:07 PM Comments comments (0)
Hello, students, parents, and teachers,

This week's' lesson is on complex sentences, but what you need to do is very simple:

Read and study the following document on understanding and constructing different types of sentences. As you do, write your own examples of simple, compound, and complex sentences. 

Tasty Sentences (PDF — 1 MB)

That's all for this week! 

Happy writing,

Write Cook