how not to write metaphors

  • Long separated by cruel fate, the star-crossed lovers raced across the grassy field toward each other like two freight trains, one having left York at 6:36 p.m. travelling at 55mph, the other from Peterborough at 4:19 a speed of 35mph.
  • The plan was simple, like my brother Phil. But unlike Phil, this plan just might work.
  • She walked into my office like a centipede with 98 missing legs.
  • It hurt the way your tongue hurts after you accidentally staple it to the wall.

how not to write metaphors (Schoolzone)

This list of howlers is prefaced with the note, “These are (allegedly) metaphors from actual GCSE essays.” A lot of the items on the list are not metaphors but similies (only the latter of which uses “like” or “as”). But they’re still funny. In the right context, many of these would actually be very good.

One of them, however, is a faded derivative of Douglas Adams’s descripton of the hovering Vogon spaceships: “The little boat gently drifted across the pond exactly the way a bowling ball wouldn’t.”