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Repeating the indefinite article. Is it a matter of style? If so, which quote is more natural [or maybe sounds better]?

My name is Amy Purdy, I am a survivor, snowboarder, founder of Adaptive Action Sports, globetrotter and daydreamer.

vs.

My name is Amy Purdy, I am a survivor, a snowboarder, a founder of Adaptive Action Sports, a globetrotter and a daydreamer.

Source: Amy Purdy Note: the first comma is from the source. It should be replaced by a period.

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    I've observed that compositions with the 'a' repeated are often used to highlight contrast, and compositions without the 'a' repeated are often used to demonstrate similarity. Compare: I got a BA, Masters, and PhD all from State University with I've been a lineman, a sailor, a mechanic, and a musician. My observation may be anecdotal. I've never seen this expressed as a rule (like adjective order), or it would be an answer and not a comment. – Davo Dec 6 '17 at 12:13
  • Thanks. My observation may be anecdotal. I've never seen this expressed as a rule (like adjective order), or it would be an answer and not a comment. – Davo Dec 6 '17 at 14:10
  • You could use the colon. Hello, I'm Amy Purdy: survivor, snowboarder, founder of Adaptive Action Sports, globetrotter, and daydreamer. – B.W. Dec 8 '17 at 23:47
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Including or omitting the indefinite article is entirely a matter of personal style. In some cases it sounds better to include it, to help emphasize the individual elements of a list.

In the picnic basket he carefully packed an apple, a pear, a bottle of wine, a round of cheese, a dish of pâté, a pat of butter, and a freshly-baked baguette, as well as a corkscrew, a sharp knife (for the fruit and the cheese), a serrated knife (for the bread), a blunt knife (for the pâté and the butter), a small china plate, a silver fork, and a single, long-stemmed wine glass.

Note how the repetitive article makes it clear there is one of each object. It also helps reinforce the impression that the subject is a meticulous person who has carefully chosen each of the items in the basket.

Remove the repetitive article, and the sentence sounds more hurried and careless:

In the basket he tossed an apple, pear, bottle of wine, round of cheese, dish of pâté, pat of butter, and a freshly-baked baguette.

There are many other reasons why a writer may choose to repeat the article, but the best way to learn these is to read copiously.

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