1. agentkirb
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    agentkirb Contributing Member

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    Use of the dash in description... this just looks wrong

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by agentkirb, Jan 20, 2012.

    "Cooper got out of the car and took in the surroundings. On first glance it wasn’t too bad of a place. A medium sized one story house with a driveway that ended in a small car port that had two cars parked under it -- a small sports car and an older beaten down SUV – classic signs of a married man."

    I think I'm doing it wrong but I can't think of another way to phrase the sentence well without having either a bunch of short choppy repetitive sounding sentences or having one giant run on sentence.
     
  2. BFGuru
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    BFGuru Active Member

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    "Cooper got out of the car and took in the surroundings. On first glance it wasn’t too bad of a place, a medium sized one story house with a driveway that ended in a small car port that had two cars parked under it. There sat a small sports car and an older beaten down SUV, classic signs of a married man."
     
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  3. agentkirb
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    agentkirb Contributing Member

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    The comma you added looks odd to me. That's not bad grammar or anything?
     
  4. Ziggy Stardust
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    Ziggy Stardust Active Member

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    Cooper got out of the car and took in the surroundings. On first glance it wasn’t too bad of a place, a medium sized one story house with a driveway that ended in a small car port. Two cars were parked underneath--a small sports car and an older beaten down SUV--classic signs of a married man.
     
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  5. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    What do you mean, “too bad OF a place”? Was the ‘of’ a typo?

    He is ‘taking in’ the surroundings, so a series of short sentences would not actually be a bad idea. The second sentence is already a fragment anyway.
    Any advice you get will be influenced by our personal style. I don’t often have fragments and dislike pairs of dashes. I also like to remind the reader from time to time about the POV. Others have a totally different style.
    Anyway, my way(ish):

    Cooper got out of the car and took in the surroundings. On first glance it was not too bad a place--a medium sized, one story house with a driveway ending in a small car port. Two cars were parked there, a sports car and an older, beaten down SUV. Classic signs of a married man, Cooper thought.
     
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  6. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    mad's version reads much better... don't try to cram so much into one poor sentence...
     
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  7. agentkirb
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    agentkirb Contributing Member

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    Sadly... it wasn't. =(

    It might be a southern thing. I don't have the accent, and I'm usually good about not using words like "Y'all" and "fixin" but sometimes it will slip out in my writing.

    That was the idea. Thanks!
     

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