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Strange Metaphors From Student Essays

Thank you for this great list of funny metaphors and similes below (in the comments section)! THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED! Any entries received from this point forward will not be counted toward the contest. We’ll be announcing the winners very soon! Keep an eye out!


At Writer’s Relief we read a lot of metaphors and similes in poetry and prose, and we have to admit, we sometimes love bad and funny ones as much as we love good ones. We’ve decided to hold a contest to celebrate bad and funny metaphors and similes. We want to make a great list of funny metaphors, extended metaphors, and bad metaphor examples. Include your bad similes as well! We hope you’ll add to our metaphor and simile list.

One winner will get a FREE Writer’s Relief T-shirt of his or her choice!

The worse your metaphor or simile, the better!

To enter your bad or funny metaphor or simile, simply submit your metaphor or simile in the comments area below. Do NOT e-mail your entry. It MUST be posted as a comment. If you win, we’ll contact you using the e-mail address that you enter in the blog comment form.

Here are a few examples of bad and funny metaphors and similes to get you going:

The little boat gently drifted across the pond exactly the way a bowling ball wouldn’t.

The toddlers looked at each other as if they had just been told their mutual funds had taken a complete nosedive.

She grew on him like she was a colony of E. coli, and he was room-temperature Canadian beef.

She was a couch potato in the gravy boat of life, flopping dejectedly on the sofa.

It will take a big tractor to plow the fertile fields of his mind.

See how fun that is? Do your worst. We can’t wait to read your bad and funny metaphors!

The Difference Between Metaphors And Similes

Metaphors and similes are often confused. The definition of a metaphor is (loosely) a figure of speech that suggests an analogy between objects or ideas. Metaphor example: He was a fish out of water.

The definition of a simile is a figure of speech that compares two unlike things, usually preceded by “like” or “as.” Simile example: She swims like a fish.

Common Metaphor Mistakes To Avoid
(aka Hints To Help You Write A Bad Or Funny Metaphor)

We’ve compiled a list of three major problems in metaphor construction:

1. Mixed Metaphor. This is a metaphor that contains completely unrelated comparisons.

Suddenly, she was pinned by the spotlight, a struggling fish caught in a spider’s web.

Or this, from Tom Wolfe’s Bonfire of the Vanities: All at once he was alone in this noisy hive with no place to roost.

2. Inappropriate Analogies. If you’re writing about a European woman in the 1700s, don’t say, Her eyes held the glow of a late-night laptop.

And watch out for comparisons that give the wrong mental image: The beautiful child was the center of attention, with his golden curls and tuna fish complexion.

3. Clichés. Certain metaphors have simply been done to death and, as a result, have lost their power completely. The trouble is that they’re so much a part of our everyday conversation, they tend to slip through the cracks.

Even though the job paid peanuts, Joe was pleased as punch because he had gone through hell and back, keeping a firm grip on reality the whole time, and was finally seeing his dream come to life.

Metaphors are useful figures of speech—they enliven our speech and our writing, bringing more depth and complexity to the table. If you master the art of metaphors, you can consider yourself a genius. Aristotle says so in Poetics: It is “a sign of genius, as a good metaphor implies an intuitive perception of the similarity of dissimilars.” We’re looking forward to making a list with your examples of bad metaphors.

Writer’s Relief is an author’s submission service (we help writers submit their books, novels, stories, essays, and poems for publication). For more information, visit

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As the editors of HuffPost Teen, we can't sing the praises of awesome teen writers enough. We've read enough teen-written work to know that high school students are some of the most insightful, creative, smart, and in some cases, hilarious writers out there. The creativity of aspiring writers can sometimes go in some pretty funny directions, and none are more humorous than these, um, unusual analogies written by high school students. We were highly amused when we stumbled upon this collection of analogies attributed to being the 56 winning entries in a 1999 Washington Post humor contest for the "Worst Analogies Ever Written In A High School Essay." They've recently been circulating on the Internet again, and we couldn't help but share our favorites with you.

Some will make you say "aww," and some will literally make you burst out laughing, even if you're sitting at your computer alone (trust us -- we speak from experience!). So here are the 20 most hilarious metaphors and similes from the bunch. Who knows, they might inspire you in your own writing!

Which of these analogies made you LOL? Tell us your favorites in the comments below or tweet @HuffPostTeen!