1. Stammis
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    Stammis Contributing Member

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    Choppy Paragraph Flow

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Stammis, Feb 25, 2016.

    So I have found that there are a few things that I need to work on, to improve my writing. I have some grammatical issues, and I need to make my prose tighter and flow better. I think this issue is related to the latter but I just want to confirm this with you on the forum.

    This is a part of an action scene far into the story and I was wondering if you think the transition from the third to the fourth paragraph seem choppy to you? That I am too quick to get to the point perhaps?

    Would it flow better if I add something about him reminiscing about his childhood or that a bird that just flew by reminded him of the freedom that he no longer has or something?

    #1 He sat alone outside the village and stared into the sky as the clouds passed by. Though Alcock’s words were harsh, they had brought him back to reality as it was. He planned to enter the Vaan ruins in time, but then what? Even if he found the knowledge that his mother wanted him to seek, what would he accomplish by it? when the world he knew was burnt, and being burned as he lingered in this isolated part of the world.

    #2 After letting his mind drift away he suddenly rose and grabbed the practise sword that was lying beside him. He swung it a few times and the movements felt natural. He imagined an enemy as he swung in the air, with a quick thrust he aimed at the figment’s head. It missed. He hung his head low, wondering how he would be able to strike a real enemy if he couldn’t an imaginary one.

    #3 Trying to shake the feeling of disappointment he did the move again and copied the movements perfectly; but as his mind traced away he put too much weight to his left foot and he slipped, almost falling to the ground. Furious he threw the sword a few meters away and roared.

    #4 As was looking down into the grass he felt a chill down his spine. He glanced backwards and he saw a person standing a distance away, glaring at him. With an urge to hold a weapon he grabbed in the air where his blade used to be. Slowly he moved towards it, pretending that he hadn’t seen the man behind him. As he moved forward he heard thumping noises from heavy footsteps getting closer and closer.
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2016
  2. -oz
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    -oz Active Member

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    Firstly, to answer your question, I think the flow between paragraphs three and four works just fine. He goes from rage to embarrassment, and I think the way you transitioned works just fine.

    Also, in the interest of helping you improve, I took the time to review your writing style. (Hopefully you don't mind!) Feel free to throw spears back at me if you disagree; we're all learning as we go through life. :)

    ---

    #1 He sat alone outside the village and stared into the sky as the clouds passed by. Though Alcock’s words were harsh, they had brought him back to reality as it was. He planned to enter the Vaan ruins in time, but then what? Even if he found the knowledge that his mother wanted him to seek, what would he accomplish by it? when the world he knew was burnt, and being burned as he lingered in this isolated part of the world. This line makes little sense and doesn't fit (though I am missing the big-picture context, so maybe it does). It's also not capitalized and is a fragmentation. "When the world is burning while he's here, ...[what happens/what's the result?]

    #2 After letting his mind drift away, he suddenly rose and grabbed the practise sword that was lying beside him. He swung it a few times and the movements felt natural. He imagined an enemy as he swung in the air, with a quick thrust he aimed at the figment’s head. It missed. This part is very statement-heavy, and though it works it could be more inspiring with a little more action. Maybe try something like, "He swung it a few times, imagining an enemy as he aimed a quick thrust in the air. Although the movements felt natural and good, the figment of his imagination dodged quickly and he missed." He hung his head low, wondering how he would be able to strike a real enemy if he couldn’t hit an imaginary one.

    #3 Trying to shake the feeling of disappointment, he did the move again and copied the movements perfectly; but as his mind traced away his steps, he put too much weight to on his left foot and he slipped, almost falling to the ground. Furious (about what, almost falling or the fact that he sucks during his training? Maybe "Furious with his failure,") he threw the sword a few meters away and roared.

    #4 As he was looking down into the grass he felt a chill down his spine. You need a verb, for example, "he felt a chill creep down his spine." He glanced backwards and he saw a person standing a distance away, glaring at him. With an urge to hold a weapon he grabbed in the air where his blade used to be. Slowly he moved towards it, pretending that he hadn’t seen the man behind him. (This feels choppy. Maybe try something more like, "He grabbed the air instinctively where his blade used to be, then slowly moved towards it, pretending..." ) As he moved forward he heard thumping noises from heavy footsteps getting closer and closer.
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2016
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  3. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    I think that the sample needs less, not more, transition. Above, I've done strikethrough on the transition that seems unnecessary.
     
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  4. NobodySpecial
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    NobodySpecial Active Member

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    I think it's hard to evaluate a portion of your work out of context. It's kind of like saying 'Here are my apples, what do you think of the pie?' A good exercise to see if your writing flows is to read it aloud. If you're stumbling on anything you can assume a safe bet the reader will too.
     
  5. Stammis
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    Stammis Contributing Member

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    Yes, that defiantly works better. Thank you for commenting :)

    PS: there are some comments added within your text, I am not sure how to quote them properly.
     
  6. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    NO.

    A chicken lays an egg.
    A sword lies on the ground.

    The distinction being that to lay must have an object (an egg, in my example) in the sentence, to lie can just have a subject.
     
  7. NiallRoach
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    NiallRoach Contributing Member

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    (You seem to have corrected it to the wrong word)
     

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