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Word Combinations

Submitted by: Bob Leslie


(Taken from the book Write Now! - by Anne Wescott Dodd – book is out of print)


The meaningful combination of words is what makes writing sensible, interesting, and often creative.  You may be surprised at the different combinations of words you can write by starting with only three words and adding other words to make a meaningful sentence.

Write a sentence using all the words listed after each number in the following exercise.  The sentences may be long or short, but they must make sense.  Try to make them clever by using the words in a slightly different manner.  Don’t settle for your first combination.  Shift the words around. 

Substitute. Improvise.  Try every possibility.  Then choose the best.

Example:  puddle    step    ginger


You might write, “The ginger-haired dog stepped in the puddle.”  A more unusual sentence would be, “Ginger learned the puddle dance step.”  Maybe you would like to “invent” a new product.  For example, “Ginger Steps, the new waterproof shoes, don’t mind going in puddles.” Notice that some words can be used as more than one part of speech.


1.      whistle         hair            bubble gum

2.      train           elevator        sirens

3.      match           flash           tree

4.      stump           heel            blonde

5.      marble          candy           walk

6.      boot            bottle          run

7.      ball            surprise        jinx

8.      paper           black           cream

9.      pipe            fog             step

10.     fall            flesh           stone