1. Stammis
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    Stammis Contributing Member

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    Which Paragraph Tickles your fancy?

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Stammis, Aug 3, 2016.

    I am torn on this, which paragraph works best do you think? And why?

    (1) Sitting quietly in her own thoughts, she did not notice Mary placing herself next to her. Noticing her much later, she found it odd that the otherwise talkative friend had remained silent. Feeling desperate to make sense of everything that has happened, a question escaped her lips, a question she knew Mary didn’t have the answers to. “Why did Jenefer die on us?”

    (2) Sitting quietly in her own thoughts, she did not notice Mary placing herself next to her until much later. Finding it odd that she had remained silent, a question, she knew she didn’t have an answer to, escaped her lips. “Why did Jenefer die on us?” Desperate to make sense of everything that has happened.
     
  2. deadrats
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    deadrats Active Member

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    I really don't care for "Sitting quietly in her own thoughts..." Can you change that? I'm not sure what kind of feedback you're looking for. It's really hard to judge anything based on such a small writing sample.
     
  3. Sal Boxford
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    Sal Boxford Active Member

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    I prefer the first one because the question makes a stronger ending than the explanation of why she's asked the question.

    ...but I think there's probably a better third option out there. The POV in both feels odd. It's like the MC noticed that she didn't notice something... if that makes sense? And there's something up with the tenses too. Maybe something like:

    Sitting quietly in her own thoughts, she suddenly noticed Mary seated next to her. How long had she been there? It seemed odd that her otherwise talkative friend had remained silent. Desperate to make sense of everything that had happened, a question escaped her lips: a question she knew Mary didn't have the answers to. 'Why did Jenefer die on us?'
     
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  4. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    Hi Stammis,

    Difficult question. Both paragraphs are like the curate's egg; good in parts.

     
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  5. deadrats
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    deadrats Active Member

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    Wouldn't she be sitting quietly with her own thought and not in her own thoughts? The wording is just a little clunky with that. I don't think it's the best way to start. Or if this is not the beginning it's still kind of clunky. Maybe try writing more directly.
     
  6. Stammis
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    Stammis Contributing Member

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    This one made me laugh:

    "I am torn on this, which paragraph works best (best is the superlative [the best of a choice of three or more], so this should be better, the comparative [the better one of a choice of two]; and, to complete the lesson, they are both versions of good, the simple descriptive) do you think? And why?"

    Glade you think they are both good, then it is just a matter of time until the paragraph becomes a polished diamond. Just need to grind on it.
     
  7. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    You've never heard of the curate's egg?

    The full story is that the curate was invited to tea with some parishioners, who served him a boiled egg, which wasn't really very good at all. When asked how he liked his egg, he tried not to be rude to his hosts so, rather than telling them it was bad, he said "Well, it was good in parts."

    A variant of the tradition of damning with faint praise!
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2016
  8. Stammis
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    Stammis Contributing Member

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    He he, well as long as the text really was "good in parts" (and not just false praise) I see no problem in that.
     

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