1. Rain Of Numbers

    Rain Of Numbers New Member

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    Guten Tag

    Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Rain Of Numbers, Nov 19, 2020.

    Hello friends,

    I'm a German writer with a couple of published short-stories here and there, but I find the idea of writing for a bigger audience, language-wise that is, very exciting. Not in a financial sense, but because writing is a form of communication, of making, or at least trying to make myself understood in ways that everyday life and everyday language don't offer, and the depth of communication, I feel, increases with the number of people being given the chance to interact with what one sends out. Now English is obviously not my mother-tongue. That might end up being a big hurdle to jump for the kinds of stories I enjoy telling and the themes I want to touch upon. Which ...
    Is why I'm here! On one hand I want to improve my English in general, on the other I want to learn, and this I take to be the bigger challenge by far, to express myself in creative and original ways within the English language. Penguin Classics, here I come ;)

    I look forward to interacting with you lot!
    Hugs, kisses and a cheeky slap on the tush.
     
  2. 31152104

    31152104 Active Member

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    Goeie dag RoN!

    I read this thread title as "Gluten Tag," and wondered what the frazzle that might mean. A tag on gluten products? Tagged baguettes?

    So, welcome, thanks for the ass-slap, and may you have many wondrous wanderings in the world of words!

    1. what genres do you plan to explore?
    2. what species of animal do you most adore?
    3. should cars be banned and steam-trains brought back into vogue?
     
  3. Rain Of Numbers

    Rain Of Numbers New Member

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    My writing is known to cause indigestion with some people, so I guess your reading isn't that far off in a way. Let's get those neatly numbered negative (k)noweries (oh my) done with:
    1. Mainly literary fiction, although that doesn't mean I actively work to avoid genre tropes. It's just that my interests lie more with interactions, introspection and wordplay than world building and such.
    2. I used to be a big fan of sharks, or I pretended to be. I think it was a kind of sublimation of my fear of open water. These days? Kinda partial to pigs, I must say. Clever things, quite cuddly too. And yes, tasty, but I don't munch 'em anymore :)
    3. Nonono. But some change within our methods of transportation is needed. Wheels are heartless abstractions, way too removed from truly human locomotion. I propose we get our best engineers to work out robotic legs for our cars. Steely limbs to replace the inhumanity of never ending rotation. I want long-legged pick-ups and stout little convertibles to shuffle through the streets. I want to hear the commuters stampeding during rush-hour. Let dust-bowls swallow the cities, let movement dictate the moment.

    Alright I'm afraid my appointment to yell the lyrics of the Spongebob Squarepants intro-song at random people in town is coming up now.
    Thanks for the warm welcome!
     
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  4. JLT

    JLT Contributor Contributor

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    I don't see anything wrong with your English, Rain. It's better than that most native speakers of the language. Probably better than my own grasp of the thing.

    I used to speak German, after a fashion, because I spent many formative years in and around Frankfurt am Main. But most if it is gone now, after fifty years of being away from it. With luck, I might be able to order from a menu in a German restaurant and get at least half of what I expected.

    As for English, it's a big sandbox. There are so many different ways to play in it, so many different forms of it, so many synonyms for a word. (Some forms of it ... say, the English of the Bronx and the Australian of the never-never ... are mutually unintelligible.) My advice to you would be to read the work of the masters, and try re-writing them in a different style. That way, you'll begin to appreciate the way the author chose to write the piece in the first place.

    I would also read as much humor as possible, because in most cases, that humor is caused by bending the language in ways that people haven't bent it before. More than any other form of writing, it relies as much on timing for effect as it does on the actual words. I prescribe the works of James Thurber, Dave Barry, and Mark Twain. Enjoy!
     
  5. Rain Of Numbers

    Rain Of Numbers New Member

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    Hello JLT, what flattery! 50 years, oh goodness. You've been away from Frankfurt longer than I have been on this earth. You had a proper schnitzel before I even was a fishy chap in my fathers ball sack. Anyway. Any plans to pay us Deutschfolk a visit again some time?

    My conversational English is fine, but as you said yourself: the English language has registers upon registers and, allow me to append my own thoughts, I feel like one should have a good grasp of a few to creatively write within it. My English is just all over the place currently. It's not that I can't express myself, but rather that I don't feel in control of how I express myself. That, I think, is not necessarily a bad thing, as it is a huge opportunity for learning and for approaching writing from a perspective that differs from that of writing in ones mother-tongue, buuuut it means one thing in particular: work. And lots of it. So thank you for your clever idea to play with the styles a bit and even more thanks to you for the reading suggestions. I know Twain (by name), but you can now claim the title of the one having introduced me to Thurber and Barry. I'll see if I can pick some up with my next haul.
     
  6. JLT

    JLT Contributor Contributor

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    Not at this time; we're waiting for my wife's health to improve before we consider traveling. I do want to go back there, although I'm told that things have changed there. Frankfurt is now called "Manhattan am Main." and my brother tells me that when you order a Wiener Schnitzel there now, you get a pork cutlet rather than a veal one.

    I make Wiener Schnitzel myself twice a year (with veal! But from humanely raised calves). It's very expensive, so I make it as a treat. And my recipes for rouladen and potato soup are the standard ones for Hesse.

    Where are you located? I have friends in Hamburg.
     

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