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“Genuinely” makes this message genuinely special

My children don’t yet own phones. They are 13 (14 in three days!) and 10 years old. Too young in our estimation for unfettered access to the sometimes beautiful, oftentimes dangerous, disastrously distracting, and all-too-often soul-crushing world of the internet.

But when they are home, they can send text messages to Elysha and me, as well as friends, via an iPad.

Admittedly, I enjoy getting the occasional message from my kids. They are often requesting favors or asking me to settle disputes, but still, it’s always surprising to see their names pop up on my phone.

Charlie was texting me on my way home from Florida last week. Check out the last text in this series of messages:

“I will genuinely stay up all night long waiting for you to get home.”

I adore the way a singular word – in this case, “genuinely” – can turn an already sweet sentence into something that shines. It’s a sentence that has probably never been written in the history of humankind, thanks to that one word.

It’s a good lesson for writers and storytellers:

Find the right word (and be daring enough to use it), and you can turn an otherwise ordinary sentence into something beautiful, impactful, and unforgettable.

Something that will make your audience smile, laugh, and maybe even shed a tear.