Can Literary Devices Elevate Your Writing? If Yes, Then How?

can literary devices elevate your writing

Before moving on, first, read this example sentence...

"Today, finding an online teacher is easy."

Now read this one...

"In this ever-evolving digital world, discovering an online tutor has become easier than ever before!"

Do you see? How the magical use of words can elevate the entire writing game? The miraculous formula used for strengthening your narrative is achieved by adding literary devices to your writing. Now, let's get into this blog and discover more about this artistic writing technique...

What are Literary Devices, and Why Are they Important? 

In easy words, these devices highlight significant details, themes, events, and points in writing. When used correctly, they can evoke emotion in the readers' hearts. 

So, whether you want to ace your English writing text in college or get the highest marks in TOEFL, using literary devices can help you impress your teacher! What's more? This writing tactic is an amazing way of strengthening the aesthetic quality and overall meaning of essays, blogs, etc. But the question is which literary devices you should use and when?

Don't worry, because we've got you covered!

Continue reading,

and you'll find 10 interesting literary devices you can integrate into your writing to become a pro writer.

10 Types of Literary Devices Every Writer Should Know!

10 Types of Literary Devices

When it comes to its types, you'll find a long list. From the devices that serve the entire paragraph/story to those distributed at the sentence level, they can be seen anywhere in a piece of writing. Below is the list of must-learn literary devices along with their detailed explanations...

1. Metaphor

Metaphor is used to compare two, unlike things that have similar qualities. Just like this, "He is the lion of his country." In reality, he isn't an actual loin, but because of his brave and authoritative behavior, he is referred to as a loin.

The main purpose of using metaphor is to help the readers clearly imagine the story or scene. With that said, metaphors are usually used in narrative writings and poems. As they add more details to the things, scenes, etc., ultimately making the piece of writing more understandable and enjoyable.

Who would have imagined that metaphors can give life to your written content in such an amazing way? 

2. Personification

We all know that time can not run, but still, we see people saying out loud, "Hurry up, time is running out!"

Surprisingly, representing things or abstract ideas via human traits is another amazing writing technique that is called personification. We can strongly emphasize any condition or situation by giving human traits to nonhuman things. Some examples of personification are:

  • Your dressing style says a lot about you.
  • "See! The star is winking at you".
  • "My brain is sleeping today."

Further, personification is also used to add imagery to the writing. For most nonhuman words, we don't find a lot of vocabulary for describing them in certain situations. This is where personification can help. 

3. Simile

Now comes simile. Just like metaphors, simile is also used for comparison. The only difference between metaphor and simile is that you use "as" and "like" for comparing one thing to another while using a simile. 

Have a look at these sentences for better understanding:

  • Learning the use of literary devices is like learning a skill.
  • Online touring is as good as in-person teaching.
  • Wow! This cushion is as fluffy as a cat.
  • That online Math teacher is as intelligent as Newton.

4. Oxymoron

Ever used the words dumb and genius at the same time? If not, start using it because it is a trick to take your writing to the next level.

Oxymoron is one of the interesting literary devices that juxtaposes two contradictory items. It is used to add a poetic touch to the content.

Look at these examples:

  • Only option: “This is the only option you’re left with!” 
  • Friendly fire: Hundreds of officers were killed by friendly fire. 
  • Virtual reality: Virtual reality is the next big thing! 

In all the above phrases, two, unlike terms, are used to create a new meaning. The initial words, i.e., "only," "friendly," and "virtual," are used as adjectives for the second words. To be precise, oxymoron adds a dramatic effect to the content and encourages readers to think!

5. Satire

What is satire?

Literary devices like satire are used for criticizing political scenarios, social norms, corruption, etc., in a funny way. For this purpose, satire uses humor, irony, and exaggeration. There are no hard and fast rules for writing satire. You just have to play with your imagination. Here're some tips you should use while using satire in your writing:

  • Master the skill of exaggeration and learn the art of humor.
  • Read renowned famous satire writers, i.e., Alexander Pope.
  • Your satire shouldn't be vicious! Make it literate.

Now let's discuss the types of satire in detail. The very first type of satire is irony. Generally, writers use irony to portray the opposite of the actual meaning, i.e., illiteracy for education, darkness for light, and so on. The second type of satire is sarcasm. It is used to mock a certain situation. Like, "I'm a computer genius but not smart enough to remove a bug!". The third kind of satire is a parody, which means mimicking a situation to make fun of it.

Depending upon the nature and topic of your writing, you can pick any of the above types and integrate them into your content. It’s this easy! 

6. Alliteration

Alliteration is a kind of tongue twister. The first consonant sound of the sentence is repeated along with the other phonemes. Not only does this add rhythm to the writing, but it also makes it more engaging plus entertaining.

Coca-Cola, Dunkin' Donuts and other such brands have also utilized this literary device to craft their brand names. Such names amuse the readers and make them think about the brand. Similarly, you can also leave a mark on your readers with this fantabulous writing technique.

You can use alliteration when you want to put stress on something. Such as "the dark, dirty door...". This sentence featuring alliteration of the sound "d" can help you emphasize the gloominess of the scene if you're writing a horror narration.

7. Foreshadowing

Foreshadowing is used differently in fiction and non-fiction content. The purpose of using this literary device is to signal the readers about upcoming events.

In non-fiction writing, it's simple. Writers use certain phrases to alert the readers that something is coming ahead, i.e., "I'll continue this discussion in section D, but for now let's focus on...", or "This section is devoted to learning the use of literary devices and the very next section will highlight the importance of using them in writing."

However, in non-fiction writings, foreshadowing is done differently. Sometimes the writers start the story with a scene that reappears at the end of the narration. And, sometimes, they show a future prediction is some character's dream, just like J.K Rowling does in her famous novel Harry Potter.

8. Onomatopoeia

"Hiss," "Boom!", "Splash" and "Cuckoo" all fall under the heading of onomatopoeia. Such words and phrases mimic the original scenario/sounds. For example, the word "Boom" is a sound produced by a blast. Instead of using a string of words to describe this sound, a simple word imitating the exact sound is used.

Onomatopoeia helps in eliminating the extra vocabulary words that divert the readers' attention and make the entire content more pleasing and easy to read.

9. Hyperbole

Hyperbole is the exaggeration of situations. If you want your sleepy friend to stop sleeping and wasting time, you might say something like, "Hi! Get off the Bed! You've been sleeping for 24 hours!" Well, it's humanly impossible to sleep for a whole day! But it's an exaggeration!

Hyperbole is used to emphasize statements. And it's best to use it if you're describing fictional scenes. But, for professional, academic, and non-fiction content, try to avoid using hyperbole as much as possible.

10. Euphemism

Euphemism is used in serious situations, and this literary device's absence can create an uncomfortable environment. In other words, euphemism represents any harsh scene in a respectful manner. Fun has nothing to do here.

When using euphemisms in your writing, you must avoid offensive language. For example, you can use "gone over the rainbow bridge" instead of the word dying.

Here're a few more examples:

  • Sanitary Engineer - garbage man 
  • The dead - the Late 
  • Lunatic Asylum - Mental Institute 
  • Senior Citizens - Old people

If you're using this technique, ensure your writing doesn't hurt the readers' beliefs and emotions. 

Winding Up!

That's all about the literary devices!

When using these devices, you must consider all the tips discussed above. Otherwise, you might ruin your essay or exam! Much worse? You'll be left with poor grades!

You can also find an online tutor to learn more about literary devices. This way, you can get individual guidance without stepping out of your house!

Sounds like, with an online English tutor, you're in for a treat! 

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With over 3 years of experience in teaching, Chloe is very deeply connected with the topics that talk about the educational and general aspects of a student's life. Her writing has been very helpful for students to gain a better understanding of their academics and personal well-being. I’m also open to any suggestions that you might have! Please reach out to me at chloedaniel402 [at] gmail.com