Another perspective on Parallelism. To give credit due, this article excerpt comes from the Writing Newsletter of Lisa Marguerite Mora. She can be reached at www.barringtoneditorial.com .
Article: “Parallelism in Your Sentences”
Balanced sentences are important because they create clarity in your reader’s mind and they keep your reader in the dream of your story. When we slip out of balanced sentences—many writers do this, including myself—we lose our credibility as word smiths and as storytellers, and our audience loses the sense of what we are trying to convey. Any sentence structure that requires a second read, that makes you pause, that feels funny—your body knows when it is a wrong construct! There can be just the slightest “Huh?”–will trip you up as a reader and sow a seed of doubt about the power of the writer. The reader wants to relax and in essence says, take me on a ride, show me the sights, and make sure I’m comfortable because otherwise, I’ll get off and hail a taxi home, and I won’t be back.
Reading your work aloud or sub-vocalizing can alert you to strange, clunky rhythms. I wonder before the printed word when people listened to storytellers around the fire, could the listeners automatically sense parallel structure? Did they feel a little (or big) kick in the stomach when it didn’t sound right? Maybe at that point the teller of tales had forgotten an important detail. The storytellers, after all, used rhyme and rhythm to help them memorize their tales—equaling pages and pages. Parallel structure was probably used as a memory prompt. They carried the stories in their bodies, differently than we do now in our age of information overload.