descriptive verbs

Now we know about active and descriptive verbs it’s time to play with them a little. As I also said we’re gonna be looking at adjectives.  

Grammar and especially Korean grammar is like math, but the really simple part like subtraction and addition. With verbs you always wanna subtract the stem 하다 and 다 and you add something to replace it and change it’s meaning, and verbs are your building blocks for a lot of other word forms - like adjectives.

Korean adjectives are always followed by your noun, you cannot put a verb immediately after an adjective nor can you put the adjective behind it as your verb is the sentence stopper. 

When we want to make adjectives you have to be aware of whether your verb is active (av) or descriptive (dv) because it changes how you change it into an adjective.        

Active verbs are as we’ve covered are active/actions. We make the verb into an adjective like this: 
Av - verb stem + 는 = Adjective
Here goes the examples! 

먹다 - 다 + 는 = 먹는 
우린 먹는 것을 없어요.
We don’t have edibles (anything/something to eat). 

사다 - 다 + 는 = 사는 
오늘 사는 사과예요. 
It’s the appel I bought today. 

Descriptive verbs are as you know verbs that describes something, probably you already know them as adjectives in the English language. 
Dv - verb stem + (으)ㄴ = adjective 
The 으 is used when the verb ends in a consonant and then it becomes 은. Let’s look at some examples, shall we?    

좋다 - 다 + 은 = 좋은 
좋은 이에요. 
It’s a good book. 

바쁘다 - 다 + ㄴ = 바쁜  
바쁜 시간이에요.
It’s a busy time. 

Notice that these 은/는s are not topic markers! Also beware of irregular verbs (mainly ㄹ) message me if you have questions and just have fun making descriptive sentences! 

On lists of “words to replace ‘said’”


Replacing “said” is this trend apparently, either Snobby Writers or misled schoolteachers are telling you that using this word is bad. Using it improperly is bad, i.e.: 

“I’m going to work,” John said. 

“Okay,” Maria said. “See you later.” 

“Bye,” John said.

That is bad writing, But it’s bad writing for a number of reasons, and if you replace every instance of “said” with “hopped angrily”, it’s still bad writing. Using the word said, or any replacement thereof, is supposed to be done sparingly, i.e.: 

“I’m going to work,” John said, reaching for his coat.

Maria didn’t look at him. Instead, she kept her eyes focused on her bowl of cereal, shifting the spoon aimlessly. “Okay.” 

He sighed, shaking his head, shrugging the coat on and opening the door. He paused, turning his head over his shoulder. 



Relying on said, or any other verb, is bad writing when you’re relying on it to tell the story happening around it. But I argue that when you must use an descriptive verb like that, 75% of the time you should use ‘said’. Do you know why? 

When it isn’t every other word, you don’t even notice ‘said’. 

I find that most of the time, a ‘more creative’ synonym for that word jars the reader and breaks suspension of disbelief. Instead of thinking about what’s happening ,they’re thinking “oh, that’s different”. 

And while it might be novel for a second, I don’t care about being novel. I care about suspension of disbelief. 

So there, that’s why the endless river of tumblr posts decrying the use of the word said really irritate me, because high school English teachers and snotty English students have decided to tell the unwashed masses that using a perfectly useful tool in your writing arsenal is bad just because They Say So. 


So I’ve seen people asking/looking for places to practice verb conjugation, and while there are sites that will give you the conjugations for a verb, there hasn’t been any practice sheets I’ve seen like for other languages.

So in an effort to do something a bit worthwhile while procrastinating, I decided to try my hand at making one for Korean!

I tried to include the major tenses learned in level 1-2, with some of the most common connective suffixes too. Below the suffixes is noun modifiers, which is how you create adjective form verbs. I also included a little place for you to take any notes. (It should be noted my * and - note on either example sheet are actually rules to remember.)

But anyway, I hope people can find these useful! Feel free to share, but please do credit me (my url is at the top of the sheet) If there’s any questions or things you think I missed please let me know~ The sheet (both colored and white) and the two examples, can be found here (I’ll also add it to my masterlist)

Beautiful Words

Not enough people give credit to language. I am going to write here a hundered words that I find beautiful or funny or interesting. Pick one. Use one. Language is so important.

Keep reading

Korean Grammar: 지만 ‘but’

Even though 지만 is used as ‘but’ it is also used to contrast two different clauses. All you have to do with it is attach it to a verb stem (which include both descriptive verbs and action verbs)


축구는 좋지만 야구는 싫어요.

I like soccer but I don’t like baseball.

Below are the different uses for 지만:

verb stem + 지만 Present tense
verb stem + 았지만/었지만/였지만Past tense
verb stem + 겠지만 Future tense
Noun + 이지만 Nouns (to be)
Noun + 이었지만 Nouns in Past tense (was)


가다 → 가지만  “go, but…”

오겠다 → 오겠지만  “will come, but…”

먹었다 → 먹었지만  “ate, but…”

예쁘다 → 예쁘지만  “pretty, but…”

슬프다 → 슬프지만  “sad, but…”

형이다 → 형이지만  “it is my brother, but…”

Different Subject Rule:

If you are talking about two different subjects then its important to not forget about topic markers! Either the topic marker 는 or 은.


매운 음식을 먹을 수 있지만 먹을 수 없어요.

I can eat spicy food but my brother can’t.

Connection Two Sentences!

So even though so far I’ve only covered that you can use 지만 to connect two clauses it can also be used in connecting two sentences. That being said we have to use the words; 하지만, 그렇지만 or 그러나.


여름이에요. 하지만 덥지 않아요.  connecting two sentences

여름이지만 덥지 않아요.  connecting two clauses

It’s summer. However it’s not hot.

Noun modifier endings

Today I’ll give you an overview of noun modifier endings. I’m not sure if this is actually the proper term for it, but it’s what my teacher used back in the day!

Noun modifier endings are  actually applied to action verbs and descriptive verbs to change them into forms that can then be used to modify following nouns. More simply, they turn action or descriptive verbs into what we would in English call relative clauses and adjectives respectively

A relative clause is a clause starting with a relative pronoun, such as “that, who, which, etc,” that describes a noun. You can think of it as a long adjective. Let’s check out some examples in English first:

This is the cake that I ate.

In this example, “that I ate” is a relative clause that describes the cake.

The school where I met my friend is over there.

In this example, “where I met my friend” is a relative clause giving more information about the school.

And of course adjectives are simpler:

That pretty girl is my friend.

My brother is a friendly guy.

Now, let’s build some relative clauses and adjectives in Korean!

Action verbs

Present tense: -는 — The present tense noun modifier ending for action verbs is -는. Just slap it onto the root of your verb (keeping in mind any changes with irregular verbs) and you’re good to go!

  • The cake that that person sells is delicious. -> 그 사람이 파는 케이크는 맛있어요.
    • 팔다 - 다 = 팔 —–> 팔 + 는 = 파는 (ㄹ irregular verb- drop ㄹ before ㄴ)
  • The books that she reads are fun. -> 그녀가 읽는 책들은 재미있어요.
    • 읽다 - 다 = 읽 —–> 읽 + 는 = 읽는

Past tense: -(으)ㄴ — For verb roots that end with a consonant, add -은. For roots that end with a vowel, just add -ㄴ. Make sure to keep changes for irregular verbs in mind!

  • The kimbap that I ate was bland. -> 제가 먹은 김밥은 싱거웠어요. 
    • 먹다 - 다 = 먹 —–> 먹 + 은 = 먹은
  • The movie that we saw was boring. -> 우리가 영화는 지루했어요.
    • 보다 - 다 = 보 —–> 보 + ㄴ =

Past habitual: -던 — If you want to refer to an action that was done repeatedly or habitually in the past, attach -던 to the verb root.

  • The school that we attended is gone now. -> 우리가 다니던 학교는 이제 없어요.
    • 다니다 - 다 = 다니 —–> 다니 + 던 = 다니던
  • My mom sings the songs that grandma used to sing. -> 우리 엄마는 외할머니께서 부르시던 노래를 부르세요.
    • 부르다 - 다 = 부르 —–> 부르 + 던 = 부르던

Future tense: -(으)ㄹ —  Again, depending on if the root ends with a consonant (-을) or vowel (-ㄹ), you use a slightly different form.

  • The place I will go is far. -> 제가 곳이 멀어요.
    • 가다 - 다 = 가 —–> 가 + ㄹ =
  • The shoes I will wear tomorrow are new ones. -> 내일 신을 신발은 새 거예요.
    • 신다 - 다 = 신 —–> 신 + 을 = 신을

Descriptive verbs

Present tense: -(으)ㄴ — The present tense noun modifier endings for descriptive verbs look like the past tense noun modifier endings for action verbs. Make sure you use -은 for roots that end with consonants and -ㄴ when the root ends with a vowel.

  • That tall building is Lotte World Tower. -> 저 높은 건물은 롯데월드타워예요.
    • 높다 - 다 = 높 —–> 높 + 은 = 높은
  • That singer is a handsome man. -> 저 가수는 잘생긴 남자예요.
    • 잘생기다 - 다 = 잘생기 —–> 잘생기 + ㄴ = 잘생긴

Past tense: -던; -았/었던 — Just as we can use -던 with action verbs to indicate a habitual past action, we can use it with descriptive verbs to indicate that a state was continuous in the past. Using just -던 on its own gives a feeling of looking back on or reminiscing about something that may still be continuing to the present time. On the other hand, -았/었던 carries a feeling of “was X in the past, but is no longer.”

  • The girl who was pretty when she was young became a beautiful woman. ->어릴 때 예뻤던 소녀는 아름다운 여자가 됐어요.
    • 예쁘다 - 다 = 예쁘 —–> 예쁘 + 던 = 예뻤던
  • Mingyu, who was very diligent, still works hard. -> 부지런하던 민규 씨는 지금도 일을 열심히 해요. 
    • 부지런하다 - 다 = 부지런하 —–> 부지런하 + 던 = 부지런하던

Future tense: -(으)ㄹ — The future tense noun modifier endings for descriptive verbs are the same as for action verbs. As always, make sure that you make any needed changes for irregular verbs. Also, please note that [descriptive verb + -(으)ㄹ NOUN] is not a very commonly used structure unless it’s followed by the noun 것 (thing). However, that starts getting into full future tense, which isn’t the point of this post.

  • I am looking for a gift that will be good to give to my friend. -> 친구에게 주기에 좋을 선물을 찾고 있어요.
    • 좋다 - 다 = 좋 —–> 좋 + 을 = 좋을


Nouns on their own can’t take noun modifier endings, but the endings can be attached to 이다 (to be). My notations of the forms the noun modifier endings take will include 이다 and be written as single units, but just be aware that they are actually 이다 plus the actual noun modifier ending.

Present tense: -인 — It’s the same regardless of whether the noun ends with a consonant or a vowel!

  • My friend, who is a teacher, is very smart. -> 선생님인 제 친구가 정말 똑똑해요.
  • That lady, who is an actress, often appears in dramas. -> 배우인 그녀는 드라마에 자주 나와요.

Past tense: -이었/였던 — -던 makes another appearance! This time it appears with 이다 conjugated to the past tense. Add -이었던 if the noun ends with a consonant and -였던 if it ends with a vowel.

  • Jimin, who was a model student, of course ended up attending a good university. -> 모범생이었던 지민이는 역시 좋은 대학교에 가게 됐어요.
  • Seungjin, who was Jimin’s friend, doesn’t contact him anymore. -> 지민 씨의 친구였던 승진 씨는 더 이상 지민 씨랑 연락을 안 해요.

Future tense: It’s sort of weird to use the future noun modifier ending -(으)ㄹ directly on 이다. Rather, you would use [NOUN이/가 될…]. This way, you are using the action verb 되다 to say that something or someone will be come something else. 

  • The man who will become Somin’s husband is very good-looking. -> 소민 씨의 남편이 될 남자는 정말 잘생겼어요.
  • Chanhyeong, who will become a doctor, has studied hard since he was young. -> 의사가 될 찬형이는 어릴 때부터 공부를 열심히 해왔어요.

Happy studying~


Let’s talk about verbs baby~ Lets talk about you and me~ Lets talk about all the good things and the bad things that.. ahem.. I promise I’ll stop now. But seriously guys I need to make a point clear to you before we get into the making of adjectives which we’re gonna do real soon, but this is about verbs.    

Like I mentioned in the post about conjugating verbs we have two types of verbs: Active and descriptive verbs (this has nothing to do with 하다 and 다 verbs). 

Active/action verbs are verbs where you’re actively doing something. It doesn’t have to be a very active thing, like looking is not something where you move, but you are doing something “actively” - it’s an action.  

Descriptive verbs are verbs that describe something. “It is beautiful” is an example of that. But hey! Isn’t that an adjective? No, as long as you say that it is something it’s a verb. So descriptive verbs are things that are but aren’t an action - they describe

Let’s look at the difference. 

좋다 means that something is good. It is something but it’s not an active thing. You cannot say you’re doing good (that’s slang/incorrect). Something is good or you’re doing well, which is not 좋아하다. So 좋다  is descriptive

좋아하다 means that someone likes something. This is an action, you actively like something. It does not mean that something is doing well. So 좋아하다 is active.

Notice: Usually you can’t say with certainty that 하다 endings are active and 다 are descriptive but since 하다 means “to do” those are most likely active.      

“...would...but...” -(으)련마는

More advanced grammar! This form actually gave me a lot of problems, especially its usage with past tense, but with some quiet thinking time and some help from some friends, I figured it out. I hope that reading this helps you as much as actually thinking about and writing it helped me!

This one is a pretty old form and it is also fairly literary as well, so you might hear it spoken by older people but you’ll probably be okay if you can just recognize and understand it when it pops up even if it doesn’t really come to mind for personal usage.


This grammar is similar to some that I already covered. Expressing a supposition or expectation in the antecedent (preceding) clause that is then offset by an opposite situation or condition in the following clause, this grammar carries a feeling of hoping for one thing but getting something else instead. In this way, it’s similar to -겠건마는/건만 for advanced grammar, -(으)ㄹ 텐데 for intermediate, and -겠지만 for a rough beginner-level equivalent. You can think of it as “but” in the context of an expectation and the reality when that expectation is not fulfilled. An important facet of this grammar is also that you not only point out that something other than the expected occurred but also express some sort of regret or feeling of dissatisfaction. To emphasize that expectation/reality divide in English we could, depending on the situation, translate it roughly as “It would be nice if… but…” or “One would think that… but…” A bit more simply, just “would… but…” will suffice in general!


This grammar can be used with action verbs, descriptive verbs, and nouns in the past and present tenses. In all cases, it can be shortened to -(으)련만.

Action verbs:

  • PAST: -았/었으련마는
    • 우리가 파티에 도착했을 때 음식이 조금만이라도 남았으면 친구들과 같이 먹었으련마는 사람들이 이미 다 먹어버렸었어요. (When we arrived at the party if there had been even a little food left we would have eaten with our friends, but they had already eaten it all.)
    • 용기를 좀 더 냈었더라면 고백했으련마는 너무 소심해서 하지 못했어요. (If I had had a bit more courage I would have confessed, but I was too timid so I couldn’t do it.)
  • PRESENT: -(으)련마는
    • 돈이 좀 더 많으면 여행 가련만 어차피 돈이 없어서 그런 생각을 안 하는 게 나아요. (If I had a bit more money I would go on a trip, but I don’t have the money anyway so not thinking about it is better.)
    • 보통 그런 간단한 문제를 쉽게 풀련만 왠지 오늘은 잘 안 풀여요. (Normally I would easily solve that kind of simple problem, but for some reason today I can’t do it.)

Descriptive verbs:

  • PAST: -았/었으련마는
    • 담배를 피우지 않았더라면 예뻤으련마는 오랫동안 담배를 피워서 얼굴이 실제 나이에 비해 더 늙어보였어요. (If she had not smoked she would have been pretty, but since she smoked for a long time, her face looked older than her true age.)
    • 내 남동생이 좀 더 일찍 일어났더라면 공항에 가기 전에 아침을 먹을 시간이 충분했으련만 너무 늦게 일어나서 밥 먹기는커녕 물을 마실 시간도 없었어요. (If my brother had gotten up a little earlier there would have been enough time to eat breakfast before going to the airport, but since he got up too late there wasn’t even time to drink water, never mind eating a meal.) 
  • PRESENT: -(으)련마는
    •   1등 당첨이 되면 좋으련만 매번 아무 상도 못 받아요. (It would be nice if I won the grand prize in the lottery, but I never get anything.)
    • 운동을 좀 했으면 건강하련만 그는 너무 오랫동안 운동을 안 해서 건강이 나빠지고 있어요. (If he exercised a bit he would be healthy, but he hasn’t exercised in a long time so his health is deteriorating.)


  • PAST: -이었/였으련마는
    • 원래 계획한 대로 기차로 갔으면 통근 시간이 한 시간이었으련만 차로 가서 거의 두 시간이 걸렸어요. (If I had gone by train as originally planned my commute would have been one hour, but since I went by car it took almost two hours.)
    • 좀 더 빨리 백화점에서 도착했으면 그 상품이 무료였으련만 이벤트 마감 시간 5분 뒤에 도착해서 할인을 조금밖에 못 받았어요. (If I had arrived at the department store a bit more quickly that product would have been free, but since I arrived five minutes past the event cutoff time, I only got a small discount.)
  • PRESENT: -이련마는
    • 제 친구들 중에서 유빈이는 가장 외향적인 사람이련만 요즘 무슨 일이 일어났는지 갑자기 소심해졌어요. (Yubin would usually be the most extroverted person among all of my friends, but lately it seems something happened and she’s suddenly become more timid.)
    • 저 카페는 미나 씨가 제일 좋아하는 곳이련만 요즘 돈이 없어서 못 가고 있어요. (That cafe is [would be] Mina’s favorite place, but lately she has no money so she can’t go.)

BONUS: This form can also be used to end a sentence! When used in this way, it sounds like a wistful exclamation.

  • 1등 당첨이 되면 좋으련만…! (If only I got the lottery grand prize…!)

As always, thank you for reading! Happy studying, everyone <3

I’m back, ready to kick some Korean grammar ass…ignments!

This is kind of a long post, but most of it is examples so it’s faster to read than it looks, and you can always do one part and come back. But lets get this show on the road.  

Lets get conjugating!
If you have been looking up words, you might have noticed that all verbs end in either 하다 or 다. This is the lexical form, you do not use this form in your sentences. The way Korean verbs are conjugated depends on the last vowel of your verb. Technically there are only two different ways to do it but I like to think of it as three, because하다 is kinda it’s own thing. 

If the last vowel in your verb is an or an you put 아요 after it and you have a basic conjugation of your verb, ready to go into your sentence.  

Easy, no? I’ll show you! 

다 -> 앉아요                                                             저 여기 앉아요.
To sit -> Sit                                                                   I sit here
다 -> 좋아요                                                             이 케이크 좋아요.
To be good -> Good                                                     This cake is good.

Now, that’s good and simple, but when ㅏ or ㅗ isn’t just the last vowel but the last letter something funny happens; the Koreans become space efficient and instead of making a new block, they squeeze the vowels together. They will probably be able to understand you if you do it wrong, but I’m confident you’ll get the hang of it.  

다 -> 보아요 -> 봐요                                                   저 이것 봐요
To see -> See (wrong) -> See (right)                             I see this.
다 -> 가아다 -> 가요                                                   저 거기 가요.
To go/walk -> Go/walk (wrong) -> Go/walk (right)          I walk there. 

As you might have guessed that leaves just about every other vowel in the alphabet. Same rules apply, so lets just do  it!

다 -> 넓어요                                                               그것 넓어요
To be wide -> Wide                                                        That thing is wide.
다 -> 웃어요                                                               저 웃어요.  
To smile -> Smile                                                           I smile. 

This time the squeezed letters are ㅓ and ㅜ, and then it’s same procedure again. 

배우다 -> 배우어요 -> 배워요                                       저 한국어 배워요
To learn -> Learn (wrong) -> Learn (right)                     I learn Korean.
다 -> 서어다 -> 서요                                                   저 여기 서요.
To stand -> Stand (wrong) -> Stand (right)                    I stand here.

Last one ladies and gents, you’re free after this. Now I know, I said that when ㅏ meets ㅏ it just disappears, but when it’s in 하다 it somehow morphs into an ㅐand becomes 해요. This is fixed, in the simple form 하다 always becomes 해요 -  just for the fun of it I’ll make a quick example.  

행복하다 -> 행복해요                                                   저 오늘 행복해요
To be happy -> Happy                                                   I am happy today.

This was regular verbs, of course there are irregular verbs too, perhaps i will get around to making a post on them, but it will not be in the near future unless I get requests asking otherwise. 

Notice: Yes, I used some adjectives, but in uni I was taught that they’re called descriptive verbs and that they’re conjugated and often act like verbs, so there’s that. Confused? Ask me  


“Neil, what is this?” you gurgled. “What does it mean ‘said is not dead’?”

“It means exactly what it says,” I screamed. “I’m saying that those posts about words to use instead of the word ‘said’ are absurd and unnecessary. People need to stop telling writers to stop using the word ‘said’.”

“But Neil!” you hissed. “Isn’t it true that ‘said’ is boring? Don’t you want your writing to be more descriptive?”

“No,” I uttered. “Not at all. Just because the word isn’t exciting doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use it.”

“That’s silly,” you yowled. “Of course it does! Why would you want to write anything that doesn’t include excitement and creativity bursting out of every sentence?”

I sighed and rubbed at my temples, trying to stave off the migraine that was beginning to rear its ugly head. “That’s ridiculous,” I sobbed. “Why on earth would it be a bad thing to cut words just because they’re commonplace? Do you think it would help your writing if you stopped using the word ‘it’? Or ‘and’? Or ‘the’?”

“Well, no…” you rejoiced. “But this is different.”

“It’s really not,” I reported. “In fact, there are two extremely important reasons why you should keep ‘said’ in your writing.”

“Oh? And what are these reasons?” you articulated.

“First, said is more or less invisible,” I moaned. “When the reader is sucked into your writing, they won’t even notice the dialogue tags if you’re using the word ‘said’. This helps prevent those tags from breaking up the flow of the dialogue, and thus the scene.”

“What’s the second reason?” you reassured.

“The second reason is that when you use a fancy and highly descriptive verb for every dialogue tag, it lessens the impact of the description,” I blabbered. “The same way if someone calls every movie they see ‘amazing’, you’re not going to take their word for it when an actual amazing movie comes along and they’re trying to tell you about it.”

“So, let me see if I understand,” you taunted. “If I keep using all those other dialogue tags, then when there comes a point when I need a character to actually mumble, or snap, or blubber, using those dialogue tags carries less impact?”

“Exactly,” I mentioned.

“But, wait,” you expressed. “Does that mean that I’m not supposed to use any dialogue tags besides ‘said’? I feel like that’s limiting my creativity.”

“Not at all,” I implored. “I’m not saying that you can’t use them. I’m saying that you should only use them if that is the actual type of speaking you want to convey. If a character is shouting, feel free to use ‘shouted’. But don’t throw those words around willy-nilly. They’re not decorations. They mean things.”

“All right, I think I’m with you,” you boasted. “So you’re saying I’m only supposed to use ‘said’ if the character is speaking with absolutely no particular emotion or inflection?”

I stared at you for a moment, wondering if perhaps you were trolling me, but the sincere expression on your face told me you were completely serious. “No, that’s not what I’m saying,” I meowed. “You can often use the actual dialogue and the context of the scene to get a sense of the tone of what is being said. Additionally, you can always use ‘said’ along with adverbs.”

“Adverbs?!” you yodeled. “But I thought adverbs were evil!”

“You thought wrong,” I threatened. “If there’s a certain descriptor you want to use for your dialogue tag, and there’s no equivalent word that fits correctly, adverbs are fine and dandy. ‘“It’s not important,” he said dismissively’ will have a very different meaning from ‘“It’s not important,” he said hastily’.”

“Okay, I guess you’re making sense,” you voiced. “So, that means that all those posts I see about words to use instead of ‘said’ are…?”

“They’re total bullcrap,” I alleged.

“Well, thank you Neil,” you squawked. “I think I now have a much better appreciation for dialogue tags and their meaning.”

“You’re welcome,” I ejaculated.

Grammar: ~더라 (1)

~더라, a grammatical structure used at the end of a sentence (although it can be used in the middle of two clauses, I’m not covering that aspect of it yet) that has a nuance that you’ve experience the something. It’s typically used when recalling a memory.

There isn’t a great way to really translate this in English to me, because if it’s translated word for word it would be really awkward so instead it’s translated as a regular sentence and the nuance is in parenthesis. 

The conjugation is very simple. Just attach ~더라 at the end of the verb or adjectival (descriptive verb) stem.

기쁘다 ~> 기쁘더라

먹다 ~> 먹더라

유진이 채식주의자이라고 하는데 이틀 전에 고기를 먹더라. = 유진 says she’s a vegetarian but (I remember/witnessed that) she was literally eating meat two days ago. 

얘는 소설을 싫어하지만 난 너무 재미있더라. = She hated that book but I (in my experience) really thought it was good.

Below is more grammar using ~더라 as an ending.

Keep reading

anonymous asked:

What are some ways I can take my writing from passive to active? I feel like what I have been writing is a lot more description that action.

Thanks for your question, good sir!  Sorry that my response came a little late.  That’s Christmas for you, I guess.

Originally posted by wall-of-thoughts

The topic of active storytelling is a complex one, and very dear to my heart – because I’ve been struggling with it for years.  It’s easy for me to lean toward description and passivity, so you’re definitely not alone with this problem!  Fortunately, since I’ve been reading about this for a few years now, I have some tips that should (hopefully) help :)

Active Storytelling

Keeping your story in active mode can do wonders for your work, whether it be short stories or full-length novels, poetry or songwriting. Active prose compels the reader to continue reading, even throughout less engaging scenes or sections.  Your characters could be sitting in a waiting room, completely still, completely silent, or lying in bed and staring up into the dark abyss of the bedroom ceiling – but with a strong narrative voice that emphasizes action verbs and sentence structures, your readers won’t be able to put it down!

The point of active prose is to create the most concise, hard-hitting, engaging sentences and paragraphs possible.  There are three main parts of your story that you can shift from passive to active…


Active voice is largely a grammatical issue, involving the form of your sentences.  This was the topic of one of my recent posts, which can be found here.

The two types of “voice” in writing are active and passive:

Active Voice – voice used to indicate that the grammatical subject of the verb is performing the action or causing the happening denoted by the verb.  Appears: “Subject + verb (+ object),” in which the subject is performing the verb. Examples

“Amelia danced.”  (Subject = Amelia, who is performing the action “danced”.)

“Sam opened the box.” (Subject = Sam, who is performing the action “opened”.)

“He punched John.”  (Subject = He, who is performing the act “punched”.)

Active voice is preferable in most situations, as it is the most condensed form of writing.  Of course, when you add in adjectives, prepositional phrases, and so forth, your sentences will become longer – but these things should be good words.  The point of active voice is to remove small words, such as excessive pronouns, prepositions, and helping verbs.

Passive Voice – voice used to indicate that the grammatical subject of the verb is the recipient, not the performer, of the action denoted by the verb.  Appears: “Object + verb (+ subject).”  Examples:

“Amelia was asked to dance.”  (Object = Amelia, who is NOT performing the action, “asked.”)

“The box was opened by Sam.”  (Object = box, which is NOT performing the action “opened.”)

“John was punched by him.”  (Object = John, who is NOT performing the action “punched.”)

Passive voice can sometimes be preferable, if you want to pointedly express passivity.  For instance, the passive form of Sentence #1 paints Amelia as a more reluctant character, who is only dancing because she was asked.  Likewise, in Sentence #2 – imagine that Sam’s brother, William, finds the box opened on the floor, and wonders who is responsible for it.  In that instance, saying that “the box was opened by Sam” keeps the focus on the box, which may be more desirable than its active comparison.

The first step to creating a more active storytelling voice is to learn how to spot these two different sentence forms.  Try to make a majority of your sentences active, so that your passive sentences stand out and carry more weight.  This will eliminate small words and long sentences – plus, it’ll keep your reader’s eye on the subject, which is where you probably want it to be.


Active vocabulary is in the similar vein of verbs – specifically, it is the use of action verbs over being or helping verbs. Action verbs are typically the most concise verbs, and the better they are, the fewer adverbs you should need to modify them.  

Action Verbs (doing) – run, walk, laugh, cry, eat, sleep, say, shout, ask, give, receive, hug, kiss, etc.

Linking Verbs (being) – am, is, are, was, were, be, been, being.

*Helping Verbs (____ + verb) – am, is, are, was, were, be, been, being; do, does, did, have, has, had; may, might, must, could, should, would, can, shall, and will.

*Action verbs and linking verbs are the only verbs that can stand alone – helping verbs must lean on another action or linking verb.

Many writers will tell you that linking and helping verbs are like cushioning.  They soften and weaken your sentence form, but in doing so, they make you more comfortable, less insecure about your writing.  Think of it as if you were going swimming: the more clothes and covering you have, the more comfortable you may be… but the slower you move in the water.  And writing isn’t a casual day at the beach.  Writing is Olympic swimming, and extra words and baggage won’t win you any medals.

Paring away your linking and helping verbs, restricting yourself mainly to action verbs, is the second step to more concise, more engaging prose.  Sometimes extra verbs will be necessary, but the more you indulge, the more you trust your readers will push through – and sometimes, they just won’t.


This third step to active storytelling is not commonly discussed in writing communities, but I think it’s every bit as important as the other two steps.  In fact, I think the more active characters you create, the easier it is to create active prose and vocabulary without even thinking.

To define active characters, though, allow me to use an example of an inactive character: Indiana Jones in Raiders of the Lost Ark. Now, I probably sound pretty crazy in saying this.  Indiana Jones does more in an hour than I do in a week.  How can I call him inactive?

Well, if you look at the plot of the entire movie, Raiders, you find that the story would not have changed if Indy were never there. The plot would have progressed the same, and the result wouldn’t have been any different at all.  So while we watch the whole movie, as Indiana Jones runs around and does a lot of crap, the real question is… does he really do anything of consequence?

The same could be said for a lot of popular stories out there, although to less of an extreme.  Many writers make the mistake of creating “observer characters” – think Watson from the Sherlock Holmes books, who observes Sherlock but isn’t the main character.  Imagine if not only Watson were an observer, but Sherlock, also, and Moriarty and Lestrade and even Irene Adler!  Imagine if the plot were the master, and things just happened to all these characters.  Would there be a story at all?  No.

So while your individual sentences, and individual verbs, should be made active participants in your chapters, so as well should your characters.  The more your characters are actually doing and making happen, and the less they’re watching happen, the more engaging and interactive your story will become!  So make sure that your characters are the performers of the action – that you have the right POV chosen, so that the reader is constantly engaged in what is being done.  Make this effort, and your story will improve drastically.

I’ve rambled for nearly three pages on this, so I hope I’ve answered your question somewhere in this!  If you have any further questions, please feel free to hit me up and I will answer the best that I can :)  Thank you for your question, and for reading my blog! Happy writing!

If you need advice on general writing or fanfiction, you should maybe ask me!

What’s the difference?? 만큼 and -느니만큼

Back with another grammar post! 만큼 and -느니만큼 look similar, but there’s a small (and important!) difference in their meaning.


The 만큼 grammar can be used with descriptive verbs; action verbs in the past, present, and future; and nouns. It indicates that what follows 만큼 is similar or equal to what comes before it, or that the two things are of a similar degree. Let’s look at some examples:

  • DESCRIPTIVE VERB: -(으)ㄴ 만큼 — 학생이 똑똑한 만큼 성적이 잘 나와요. (Students get better grades depending on how smart they are [Students get grades equivalent to how smart they are].)
  • PAST: -(으)ㄴ 만큼 — 경훈 씨는 제가 공부한 만큼 공부를 열심히 했어요. (Kyeonghoon studied just as hard as I studied.
  • PRESENT: -는 만큼 — 뷔페에 갈 때 돈을 내는 만큼 많이 먹어야 돼요. (When you go to a buffet, you should eat as much as you pay for [to the extent that you paid for it, you should eat that much].)
  • FUTURE: -(으)ㄹ 만큼 — 아이들이 다 충분히 먹을 수 있을 만큼 음식을 많이 준비해 주세요. (Please prepare a lot of food so that the children will be able to eat enough.)
  • NOUN: 만큼 — 동생의 키는 오빠의 키만큼 커요. (My younger brother is as tall as my older brother [My younger brother’s height is as big as my older brother’s height].)
    • Please note that with nouns, 만큼 attaches to the noun! When used with descriptive and action verbs, there is an obligatory space.

만큼’s meaning is similar to that of 정도, which expresses the degree of something!


-느니만큼 is similar to 만큼 in that it expresses the degree of something, but it also expresses a reason for something, similar to -니까. It can be used with action verbs, descriptive verbs, and nouns, in the past and present tenses. It can sometimes be switched with 만큼 as described above, but you lose a bit of that “because” meaning.

  • AV PAST: -았/었으니만큼 — 공부를 열심히 했으니만큼 성적이 잘 나오겠어요. (Because you studied hard [and to the extent that you studied hard], you should get good grades.)
  • DV PAST: -았/었으니만큼 — 배가 고팠으니만큼 많이 먹었어요. (Because I was hungry [and to the extent that I was hungry] I ate a lot.)
  • AV PRESENT- -느니만큼 — 열심히 일하느니만큼 피곤해요. (Because I am working hard [and to the extent that I am working hard] I am tired.)
  • DV PRESENT- -(으)니만큼 — 공기가 좋지 않으니만큼 마스크를 꼭 챙기세요. (Because the air is not good [and to the extent that it is not good], please wear a mask.)
  • NOUN PAST: -였/이었으니만큼 — 가장 간절히 원하던 꿈이었으니만큼 그 꿈을 이루기 위해서 다했어요. (Because it was my most fervently desired dream [and to the extent that it was my most fervently desired dream] I did my best to achieve it.)
  • NOUN PRESENT: -(이)니만큼 — 중요한 발표니만큼 준비를 철저하게 해야 돼요. (Because it is an important presentation [and to the extent that it is an important presentation] I must prepare thoroughly].)

Feel free to ask if you have any questions or, if you see any mistakes, please let me know so I can fix them!

Happy studying~

thespianic-loser  asked:

안녕하세요! I'm studying some Korean grammar and I'm confused about adjectives vs. descriptive verbs... what's the difference between "작은 애기" and "애기 작아요"? 감사합니다!

안녕하세요 😊 ok so in Korean adjectives are basically verbs i.e. when you look up an adjective they are in the 하다 form, so when you want adjectives and descriptive verbs to be used in the adjective form you have to add  ~(으)ㄴ. 

은 is added when the stem ends in a consonant and ㄴ is added when the stem ends with a vowel or ㄹ, when it is 있다 or 없다, 는 is added. 

So taking your example of "작은 애기" vs “애기 작아요” in the first phrase 작다 meaning ‘to be small’ has been converted into the adjective form 작은 and now just means ‘small’, so "작은 애기" means ‘small baby’. In the second phrase however, 작다 is still in its “verb” form so although its been conjugated into present tense, it still holds the meaning of ‘to be small’ so "애기 작아요" can be translated to ‘the baby is small’ 

I hope this helps!!


Whalien 52  1

이 넓은 바다 그 한가운데
한 마리 고래가 나즈막히 외롭게 말을 해
아무리 소리쳐도 닿지 않는 게
사무치게 외로워 조용히 입 다무네
아무렴 어때 뭐가
됐던 이젠 뭐 I don’t care
외로움이란 녀석만 내 곁에서 머물 때
온전히 혼자가 돼 외로이 채우는 자물쇠

➼ 넓다 - to be wide
➼ 바다 - the sea
➼ 한가운데 - the middle, the center
➼ 마리 - counter for animals
➼ 고래 - a whale
➼ 나즈막하다 - a descriptive verb used for a low and a calm voice
➼ 외롭다 - to be lonely
➼ 닿다 - to reach
➼ 사무치다 - to pierce/touch one’s heart
➼ 조용하다 - to be calm, silent
➼ 입 다물다 - to close/shut one’s mouth
➼ 아무렴 - of course, certainly, here it probably means “sure”
➼ 외로움 - loneliness
➼ 녀석 - guy
➼ 머무르다 (르 verb) - to stay, remain
➼ 온전히 - wholly, soundly (as it was)
➼ 채우다 - to erase
➼ 자물쇠 - a lock

누군 말해 새끼 연예인 다 됐네
Oh fuck that, 그래 뭐 어때 누군가 곁에
머물 수 없다 한대도 그걸로 족해
날 향해 쉽게 얘기하는
이 말은 곧 벽이 돼
외로움조차 니들 눈엔 척이 돼 

➼ 새끼 - can mean a young being, but it’s also a curse word *bastard 
➼ 연예인 - a celebrity
➼ 족하다 - to be to be enough, sufficient
➼ 향하다 - to head/lead to
➼ 쉽다 - to be easy
➼ 얘기하다 = 이야기하다 - to talk, to say
➼ 곧 - at once, right away
➼ 벽 - a wall
➼ 척 - this one is hard to tranlate, something like “to be obvious with just one look”

아무리 ~아/어도 = no matter how much
   ⇨ 아무리 소리쳐도 - no matter how much I scream

Background information:
All verbs (descriptive and active) end in ~다. When we remove the 다 to conjugate, we have what is called the stem left. 가다~> 가 the stem of “가다” is “가.” If you haven’t learned how to conjugate regularly yet, you should check this post:

Also, I will only be doing present tense and past tense conjugations because those are the simplest.

Verbs stems ending in 이:
When conjugating to present tense, end in 이어 which can contract to 여
Ex: 기다리~> 기다려 (present)~> 기다렸어 (past)

ㅂ group
If a stem ends in “ㅂ”, replace it with 우 and THEN do the conjugating so: present tense ~워 or past tense ~웠어
Ex: 아름답다~> 아름다워 (present)
Or 아름다웠어 (past)

ㄷ group
If the stem ends in ㄷ and the next syllable starts with a vowel, replace ㄷ with ㄹ
Ex: 듣다~> 들어 (present) or 들었어 (past)
(Unfortunately there are some exceptions to this rule, but don’t worry about it now)

ㅅ group
If a stem ends in ㅅ and the next syllable starts with a vowel, delete ㅅ
Ex: 짓다 ~> 지어 (present)~> 지었어 (past)

ㅎ group
If a stem ends in ㅎ and the next syllable starts with a vowel, delete the ㅎ
Ex: 파랗다~> 파라 (present)~> 파랐어 (past)

르 group
If a stem ends in 르 and you need the 어/아 form, replace it with
ㄹ라 or ㄹ러 (if the last vowel before that was 오 or 아 use ㄹ라, any other vowels use ㄹ러)
Ex: 모르다 since the last vowel before “르” is “오”, we use ㄹ라 So
모르다~> 몰라 (present)~> 몰랐어 (past)

ㄹ group
If a stem ends in ㄹ and the next syllable behind with 시, ㄹ, ㅂ, ㄴ, or 오, delete the ㄹ.
Ex: 길다~> 깁니까 (question ending in formal form)

으 group
If a stem ends in ㅡ, and the next syllable starts with a vowel, change the ㅡ to ㅓ or ㅏ
I’m not 100% sure, but I think which one depends on if the vowel before that is ㅏ or ㅗ (you use ㅏ) or anything else/no more vowels (useㅓ)
Ex: 예쁘다~> 예뻐 (present)~> 예뻤어 (past)
Ex: 아프다~> 아파 (present)~> 아팠어 (past)

Yep, that’s a LOT of irregular stuff, but if you use it often, you’ll get the hang of it :D I hope this helps!!
~특별한 보라 ♪( ´θ`)ノ

K-Pop Vocabulary

G-Dragon - 삐딱하게

삐딱하다 = crooked, tilted, perverse

영원 = eternity, everlasting

절대 = never

결국에 = after all, in the long run

변하다 = to change

이유 = reason, cause, grounds

진심 = sincerity

내머려둬 = leave me alone, give me a break

어차피 = anyhow, anyway

혼자 = alone

위로 = comfort

사탕 = sweet, candy

버럭버럭 = desperately, frantically

소리치다 = to call out

현기증 = dizziness

연인들 = lovers

화풀이 = vent one’s anger

괜히 = in vain

양아치 = gangster

동네 = village

시비를 걸다 = to start arguments, provoke quarrels

일부러 = deliberately

가끔 = sometimes

세상 = world

주인공 = protagonist

잃다 = to lose

외로운 = lonely

헤매다 = to wander, roam

섬 = island

텅텅 비다 = to be all hollow, all empty

가득 채운 = filled

맘 (마음) = heart

참 = truly, very

더럽다 = filthy, dirty, awful

믿다 = to believe in

우습다 = funny, humorous, comical

새끼손가락 = little finger, pinky finger

맹세 = vow, pledge

긋다 = to draw

짙다 = thick, deep, dark, heavy

아이라인 = eyeliner

스프레이 = hairspray

통 = doubles as word and counter for containers and buckets

가죽바지 = leather pants

가죽자켓 = leather jacket

걸치다 = to wear, put on, slip on

인상 쓰다 = to scowl

아픔 = pain

숨기다 = to hide, cover, conceal

침 = spit, saliva

투박하다 = crude, rough

말투 = one’s way of speaking

거칠어지다 = to roughen

무섭다 = scary

실은 = actually

두렵다 = fearful, afraid

돌아가다 = to return, go back

데 = place

상대 = companion, mate

그래서 어쩌라고 = so what

마냥 = forever

힘들다 = hard, strenuous

그대 = you (romantic literary you for songs and poems)

그립다 = to miss (descriptive verb mostly used for non-persons)

anonymous asked:

when and how do you use dialogue in a way it'd flow smoothly? i'd really appreciate the advice!!

Dialogue that flows smoothly is all about pinpointing the best way to portray the scene’s main emotions. Scenes with powerful emotions will rely on body language, tone of voice, and word choice. The emotion is so powerful that pulling back a bit is actually the best way to go. Let simple things like voice and face be the story teller! This will allow the reader to feel the emotion in the way they personally do than feel it has been forced upon them.

Now, with scenes that are less emotional, get bigger. Match the dialogue with action to spice the scene up and really create a good understanding of what secondary emotions are being felt. Not every reader will emotionally connect to flatter emotions, but you can give them more content to help them latch on.

Remember, never forget to stay in character with dialogue, emotional or not! That’s a killer with most new writers. Know your characters best. You may find that the reason your dialogue isn’t working is because everyone has the same voice. I have a post that I call “The Great Liv Character Voice Rant of 2017″ that may help.

Let me show you an example of a scene where there is high emotion!

“I don’t love you” he whispered with tears beginning to crest over his eyelids. 

I stared, shaking my head. My breath had caught in my throat. “Wait, what?” I wondered. 

See what I did there? He’s whispering, so we see that it’s not something he wants to say. He’s crying too! His partner can’t even breathe because they’re so upset, and they’re shaking their head in denial. This description portrays the message and impact of the dialogue! Using descriptive dialogue verbs here adds detail and emotion!

This is for a scene where there is a less powerful emotion present. 

I lifted the baby out of his highchair, removing his bib while speaking. “I don’t care” I told my husband. “Do whatever.” 

“Do whatever?” he asked, sounding annoyed. “What do you mean?” 

The baby bottle toppled into the sink. Water filled it, my son reaching out to play with it. I had to hike him up on my hip so that his hands didn’t go into it when I reached in to drain the sink. “I mean I don’t care what you do.” 

Here, we see the wife is clearly busy and irritated. She’s not looking at her husband while she speaks, her focus isn’t on the conversation, and the action matches the dialogue. This showing of disinterest through her actions solidifies and validates the emotions she’s portraying through her words. This is good to use when the dialogue isn’t necessarily interesting or crucial. The addition of action to match really drives that idea home and creates a better understanding of how the character is feeling. 

See? If just takes a bit of practice! I hope I could help!

Never mind THAT... -기는커녕 (-은/는 고사하고)

The grammar that we’ll be checking out today is -기는커녕. This form is interchangeable with -은/는 고사하고, so I will write all examples using both -기는커녕 and -은/는 고사하고.


This grammar has two meanings. The first is used when you want to show the extent to which something is difficult to achieve or unlikely to happen by comparing two actions or conditions, neither of which are achieved. The preceding clause contains the more difficult to achieve of the two conditions, and the antecedent clause contains something that is easier to achieve but still is not done.

The second meaning is used when you want to express an outcome or situation opposite or different from what the preceding clause leads you to expect.

Both meanings of -기는커녕 can be translated to English as  “never mind…” or “let alone…”. This expression is only used for negative meanings.


-기는커녕’s usage is pretty simple! Just add -기는커녕 to action and descriptive verbs and -은/는커녕 to nouns. Their equivalents using the -은/는 고사하고 form are -기는 고사하고 for action and descriptive verbs and -은/는 고사하고 for nouns.


  • Action verbs: -기는커녕 / -기는 고사하고 /-는 것은 고사하고 
    • 오늘 아침 하도 바빠서 아침을 먹기는커녕(먹기는 고사하고) 물조차 마시지 못했어요. (I was so busy this morning that I couldn’t even drink water, never mind eating breakfast.)
    • 요즘 동화 씨의 불면증이 심해져서 잠을 푹 자기는커녕(자기는 고사하고) 10분도 못 자요. (Lately Donghwa’s insomnia has gotten worse so he can’t even sleep for ten minutes, never mind sleeping sufficiently.)
  • Descriptive verbs: -기는커녕’s first meaning does not seem to work with descriptive verbs! I racked my brains for a while, then asked my Korean friends to help me out. All of the examples they gave me fell pretty squarely in the bounds of meaning 2.
  • Nouns: -은/는커녕 / -은/는 고사하고
    • 그녀는 하도 가난해서 새 옷은커녕 밥도 못 사요. (That lady is so poor that she can’t even buy food, never mind new clothes.)
    • 사교성이 부족한 그 남자는 애인은커녕(애인은 고사하고) 친구도 사귈 수 없어요. (That man with lacking social competence can’t even make friends, never mind finding a date.)


  • Action verb:  채원 씨는 요리를 잘한다고 했는데 요리하기는커녕(요리하기는 고사하고) 물조차 끓이는 방법을 모르는 것 같아요. (Chaewon says that she’s good at cooking but it seems she doesn’t even know how to boil water, never mind cooking.)
  • Descriptive verb:  -기는커녕 / -기는 고사하고 / -은/는 것은 고사하고 — 그는 팬이 엄청 많다고 자랑했는데 팬이 많기는커녕(많기는 고사하고) 팬카페에 가입한 사람은 7명밖에 없었어요. (He bragged that he has a ton of fans, but there were only seven people registered on his fan site, never mind a lot of fans.)
  • Noun: 그녀의 생일이었는데 남편한테 선물은커녕(선물은 고사하고) 이혼서류를 받았어요. (It was her birthday but she got divorce papers from her husband, never mind a gift.)

Happy studying~