1. waitingforzion
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    waitingforzion Active Member

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    Trapped in Sing-Song

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by waitingforzion, Dec 7, 2013.

    Hey guys,

    I am having a serious problem writing. Whenever I try to make my writing poetic, I get stuck in certain sing-songy rhythms, and am not able to vary my rhythm enough to communicate. Sometimes I even try to forget about rhythm, and just write regular prose, but for some reason I can't seem to do that. What I'm talking about is when you write one part of a sentence which follows a certain rhythm, and then only a certain arrangements of words can follow because they must complete that rhythm. My problem is that I don't start with a flexible enough rhythm to have much of a choice about what words should follow. Is there a way that someone can help me? Has anyone else ever experienced this?
     
  2. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    Oh, but yes I have. I'm nowhere near accomplished enough as a poet to give myself too tight of a formula to follow. I wrote a little ditty called Noodle Poodle that started of swell, but then the rhyming scheme and the rhythm soon outstripped my talent. Never finished it. :(
     
  3. stevesh
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    stevesh Banned Contributor

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    I'm not sure exactly what this means. Are you trying to write poetry, or ...? An example might help me out.
     
  4. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    ditto that...
     
  5. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Then break the rhythm. Not every line in your prose has to be poetic or poetry. Unless of course you have deliberately set yourself out to write prose poetry?

    But if it's just regular prose, your sense of rhythm will help make your writing better. And where it doesn't fit, just break it then lol, or rewrite the sentence to be something simpler. Simple sentences wouldn't lend itself to as complex a rhythm.
     
  6. waitingforzion
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    waitingforzion Active Member

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    I'm talking about prose that has cadence or rhythm, or whatever you call it.
     
  7. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Perhaps it's the drumbeat you've been hearing in your head all your life: Ta-ta-ta-bum, ta-ta-ta-bum...
     
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  8. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Good prose always has cadence and rhythm, but does not have to adhere to the rhythm if you don't want it to. Depends on what kind of prose you're writing - exposition and description would have - and should have - a different rhythm to an action scene. And then dialogue has its own almost non-rhythm (nobody talks in rhymes after all). Your problem is not that you have rhythm, but how to vary the rhythm - and I've already told you. Break the rhythm, or rewrite the sentence - if your rhythm is too strict, then I can only imagine you're not varying your choice of words between the simple and the elaborate, or perhaps you're trying too hard to write one type of work.

    Perhaps reading some poetry - esp modern stuff that perhaps has no meter or a very loose meter - might be helpful in showing you how to break the rhythm, as it seems you've got following one down pat. Sometimes breaking a rhythm can be jarring, which is the exact effect you want.

    If none of this is helpful, perhaps you could help us by posting an example sentence?
     
  9. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    we really can't help you at all, till we can see some of what you are asking us about... why won't you post 2 or 3 examples?
     

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