1. Misha94
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    Misha94 New Member

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    Purple Prose

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Misha94, Apr 29, 2013.

    At what point does prose become purple?

    I'm not sure, I don't want my writing to be too flowery, but at the same time I don't want it to seem bare.
     
  2. blackstar21595
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    blackstar21595 Contributing Member

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    I'll give you an example from the best purple prose writer-- Amanda McKittrick Ros.

    "Have you ever visited that portion of Erin's plot that offers its sympathetic soil for the minute survey and scrutinous examination of those in political power, whose decision has wisely been the means before now of converting the stern and prejudiced, and reaching the hand of slight aid to share its strength in augmenting its agricultural richness?"

    And

    "She tried hard to keep herself a stranger to her poor old father's slight income by the use of the finest production of steel, whose blunt edge eyed the reely covering with marked greed, and offered its sharp dart to faultless fabrics of flaxen fineness."

    In a nutshell, purple prose is when the writing becomes so florid, that you're wondering what the hell the author is trying to convey to you.
     
  3. Jared Carter
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    Jared Carter Member

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    The opposite of purple prose is beige prose. There is a topic here on TV Tropes that has some good examples.
     
  4. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    Flowery/florid isn't necessarily a bad thing it's when you cross the line into schmaltz, being overly sentimental when you think you're being
    sensitive. Being excessive - piling sentences with two many ideas, heaping on adjectives or adverbs onto every noun or verb and using superfluous words that in end you lose whatever meaning you started with -
    Here's a sample of Amanda McKittrick Ros queen of purple prose- "Do not sit in silence and allow the blood that now boils in my veins to ooze through cavities of unrestrained passion and trickle down to drench me with its crimson hue!" - Say huh?

    Couldn't she just as easily as said - Do not punish me with silence while I boil in unquenched passion. - Still a little flowery but
    at least it's coherent.
     
  5. squishytheduck
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    squishytheduck Senior Member

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    I would err on the side of beige, but add color with verbs and sentence structures. Bare is a style of its own. After Poe, everyone prefers a little economy, so it that's how you write, go with it.
     

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