#Prowrite: The Basics Part Four – Paragraphing

There’s nothing worse than reading a piece of work that is one giant block of text. It’s difficult for your brain to cope with and reading becomes a huge chore.

Equally, it’s distracting when you read a piece where the paragraphs seem taken at random with no logic!

Here are a few hints and tips I use to help my students understand paragraphing.


A useful way to decide when to take a paragraph is the TiPToP acronym:

Ti = Time – if there’s a shift in time, forward or backward.

P = Place – if the setting changes.

To = Topic – if the topic changes.

P = Person – if the person speaking/narrating/being described changes.

It’s good to use a variety of paragraph lengths in writing. Very short, even one word, paragraphs can highlight important parts of a text. Longer paragraphs are good for exposition.

Don’t make your paragraphs too long, as the reader may lose track. Equally, avoid making all of your paragraphs the same length. The reader soon views your prose like wallpaper and loses interest.


A short post today but hopefully a useful one! The next post is longer a d delves into the nitty gritty of grammar issues such as subject-verb agreement and dangling modifiers. Delightful!

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