Writers need to be aware of mood changes.

You need to alert the reader as soon as possible to any change in mood from the previous sentence. Words to use for changing the mood include: but, yet, however, nevertheless, still, instead, meanwhile. 

It is much easier for readers to process a sentence if you start with “but” when you are shifting direction. It is much harder if they must wait until the end of the sentence to realise that you have shifted.

Many of us were taught that no sentence should start with “but.” If that’s what you learned, unlearn it. There is no stronger word at the start of a sentence when you want to change the mood.

A simple example shows that version (a) is preferable:
(a) The horse ran very well. However, the rider looked uncomfortable.
(b) The horse ran very well. The rider looked uncomfortable, however.


If you liked this post, check out the Related Articles over in the sidebar. You might also consider reading some of Franks other posts, or better yet, subscribe to the RSS feed for the Copy Corner blog and get Franks copywriting tips direct to your reader.