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Why use FIDDS?
FIDDS are the basic elements of a writer’s style.A writer only has language to express his/her personality.FIDDS helps the reader figure out theme and tone.
“FIDDS” stands for figurative language, imagery, diction, detail, and syntaxAs you read, try to find examples of these elements and explain why these elements are important– how they help to create tone and theme.
Figurative Language
Includes: Metaphor, Simile, Personification, Hyperbole, Symbols, and Irony
Metaphor Examples
Afootball playeris abulldozeron the field.Thecatcherwas thebomb!Remember: Metaphors compare two unlike objects. They imply the comparison.
Simile Examples
Maryhas the face like arose.Jimmyran like acheetahto the base.Remember: A simile directly compares two unlike objects using like, as, than, similar to, or resembles.
Personification Examples
Lea’s friendshipwrapped my sadnessin a warm blanket.Thetreesighed sadlyin the cold.Remember: Personification gives human qualities to something that is not human, such as an object, idea, or animal.
Hyperbole Examples
Definition:Hyperbole is an exaggeration that is based in truth.I’m so tired I could sleep for a week.I was hungry enough to eat a cow.I laughed until my sides split open wide.
Symbol Examples
Definition:A symbol is something that stands for itself. A symbol is literal but it represents something else.Rose is a symbol of love.Rainbow is a symbol of hope.Flag symbol of country.Moon symbol for mystery.
Irony Examples
Definition:Irony is saying the opposite of what you mean. Irony can be funny, serious, affectionate, or hateful. This is what makes it sometimes hard to understand.Example: You just got served a disgusting and overcooked meal for lunch. You say “Great lunch!”It is stormy and lightning bolts are crashing outside and you comment-- “What a great day for a swim!”
Imagery appeals to your 5 senses: SIGHT, SMELL, SOUND, TASTE, TOUCH
Imagery Examples
Sight: Eerie glow in the morning fogSound: shrieking, wailing, moaning, creakingSmell: Theputrid rise of garbage stench filled the air.Taste: The soup seems bitter and laced with phlegm.Touch: The mud oozed in my palm.
Diction is isolated words that the author chose when writing.Diction guides the meaning an author wants the reader to take away from the text.This word choice covers bothconnotation(the feeling the word gives the reader) anddenotation(the literal meaning of the word).
Diction Examples
Instead ofchildishusechildlikeInstead ofstanduseslouchInstead ofprettyusedelicateInstead ofemptyingusethrowingWords create feelings inside the reader. Word choice must be deliberate and specific in order to make sure that the meaning that was intended is actually created.
Details are facts the help color an otherwise drab “picture” for the reader. Gives focus to writing.Details give life to characters, settings, and situations.Sometimes, it’s the details the authorleaves outthat makes the strongest point.
Details Examples
He was an old man. His black, heavily wrinkled face was surrounded by a halo of crinkly white hair and whiskers that seemed to separate his head from thelayers of dirty coatspiled on hissmallish frame.“The Treasure of Lemon Brown” by Walter Dean MyersContrasting details: layers of dirty coats make him seem padded and heavy; but the small frame makes him seem frailThe details also give the reader a mental picture of the old man
Syntax is the structure of the text.It is how punctuation, sentence structure, sentence length, or repetition of words are used in the text.The structure is how the piece is crafted.
Syntax Example
Elements of Syntax: sentence parts, word order, sentence length, punctuationOriginal: He was a year older than I, skinny, brown as a chocolate bar, his hair orange, his hazel eyes full of mischief and laughter.Breakdown of original: Older:comparative of an adjective;skinny:adjective; brown as a chocolate bar:simile that describes subject; orange:adjective; full of mischief and laughter:adjective phrase.You try:He/She was ___________________ (comparative of an adjective) than I, ________________(adjective), ___________________(simile that describes the subject), his/her hair ______________(adjective), his/her eyes ___________________ (adjective phrase).





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