1. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    Weird paragraph

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Rei, Aug 31, 2009.

    I'm having a lot of trouble with one paragraph that the editor tells me I have to change. I don't mind changing it to make it sound better, or removing it completely (preferably not), but the one she is suggesting makes no sense and contradicts some of what I originally had, so I am stuck.
    This was what I originally wrote:
    This is what the editor has:
    When it comes to fantasy fiction, illogical and impossible have nothing to do with each other. Even highly successful fantasy writers say that it's about the impossible, not the illogical.
    Any ideas as to what to do with the paragraph would be helpful.
     
  2. CharlieVer
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    CharlieVer New Member Contributor

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    When I have more time, I might come up with something, but I don't like the second version. "Many people" is vague. What people?

    I'm not sure what either version is trying to say, however. I have to ponder it. They do contradict--one says that fantasy is about the illogical and one says it's not about the illogical. (If the editor's version, why is she grimacing at the illogical? That's...um...illogical!)

    Interestingly though, I think your signature line could fit into the quote.

    "Tara grimaced at such an illogical thought. Fantasy was about the impossible according to accepted realities, not what was illogical. If there was one thing Tara knew, it was that the accepted realityies of her world were not all true. I reject your reality, Tara thought, and substitute my own!"
     
  3. DragonGrim
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    DragonGrim Contributing Member

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    Here’s a possible idea.

    “Tara grimaced at such an illogical thought. Fantasy goes beyond accepted realities with the impossible, not simply the illogical. With certainty, She knew that the accepted realities of her world did not all hold true.”
     
  4. MumblingSage
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    MumblingSage Contributing Member

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    I just finished the assigned reading for one of my college classes that involved long debate on whether or not magic and supersition of the Middle Ages was illogical or nonlogical--that is, whether it was totally without method or just without the sort of method the rest of the world has. Ow.

    Maybe you should talk to your editor about this--is she very approachable? Do you think she'd be willing to back down if you explained your case, perhaps narrowed down what she means by illogical?
     
  5. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    Well, the reason I say illogical doesn't apply is because the world may not follow all of our rules, but it does have rules and they are followed perfectly. Also, just because something is illogical doesn't mean it's impossible and something that may not technically be possible can still have a kind of logic to it.
     
  6. sorites
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    sorites Senior Member

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    This.

    You, your editor, and the people in this thread all had a hard time understanding what you were trying to say in that paragraph with illogical and impossible and all that. So skip it. When you explained what you meant, I understood you. So use what you wrote above, or something like it, so that your reader knows what you're talking about too. It doesn't need to be poetic, but it's got to be understandable.

    Maybe something like...

    Tara grimaced at the idea. She had to believe that the world had its own rules, and it followed them without exception. Fantasy, on the other hand, was about making the impossible possible.
     
  7. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    the editor took major and unjustified liberties with your paragraph, imo...

    aside from the misspelling and some clarification/simplification of what are rather over-complicated sentences, there wasn't anything that 'off' about your original version, to justify rewriting it completely and adding to it.... here's how i'd have corrected it, were i your editor:

    that doesn't really change anything you said, just simplifies and clarifies it... the editor should not be allowed to make such major changes... are you sure you want to stay with this publisher?... which one is it?...

    hope this helps... love and hugs, maia
     
  8. architectus
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    architectus Banned

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    It looks like she thought the middle sentence didn't express an idea clearly enough. Even she misunderstood what it meant. That's the only sentence she changed. I think the part that bothered her, and thus the rewrite, is your sentence says that accepted realities think fantasy is about the impossible. Accepted reality don't think anything, but the people in them do. I'm pretty sure that's why she started with many people . . .
    Tara grimaced at such an illogical thought. In the realities that most people accepted, fantasy was about the impossible, not the illogical. If Tara knew one thing, it was that the accepted realities of her world were not all true.
    I would definitely change "If there was one thing Tara knew," to "If Tara knew one thing."

    Perhaps make more of a connection between the last sentence and the second sentence. You could change the last sentence to something like . . . Even on Tara's world, people believed in untrue ideas, untrue and impossible, yet in their own strange way, logical.

    Or something like that anyway.
     
  9. Atari
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    Atari Active Member

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    Well, if nothing else, you are both making a basic error.

    The correct way to write is like this: "Fantasy is about the impossible, not the illogical."

    Since fantasy still is, and has not changed in truth, you use the word 'is' to indicate that it -- well, is, not was.
     
  10. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    atari...
    since that narrative is written from the character's pov, 'was' is acceptable and correct, given that the story is being told in past tense...
     
  11. Atari
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    Atari Active Member

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    The character's point of view thing I'll buy, but even though it is being written in past tense, it STILL is, right?

    I can accept that it is O.K. for the characters to make mistakes, but I don't think that it is correct, grammatically speaking.


    Edit: But of course, feel free to correct me. <_<
    >_>
     

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