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And perfect communication can occur without one word being spoken.

Removing your eyeglasses to read

And in the absence of clarity even the writer may forget the formerly obvious purpose that has somehow managed to burrow and hide beneath a fuzzy blanket of language. Obviously, it is easier to write a short clear sentence than a long clear one. It has become a sacred cow of sorts, and I have changed it. Maybe we should venture deeper into colloquial English and say, Mom died today.


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Mother died today. Maman died today. Today Maman died. My mother died today. Today my mother died. What all these versions have in common is that they are clear. Each suggests a slightly different shade of meaning, a refinement of our understanding of the complex responses elicited by the word mother in any language; along with a slightly different emphasis on when her death occurred.

Scribe Guide to Writing a Perfect Book Title

Later we can look back on this line as a key to who the narrator is, to the mystery of why he does what he does, and to the consequences of his actions. But no matter what we conclude, the fact remains that we have understood the first thing he has told us. Most of the three-word sentences that come to mind—She likes chocolate. The sun shone. I love you—are clear, even if we interpret their meaning in different ways. The elephant and.

Down tree dog. Big along also. Lacking either a subject or verb, or both, none of these are proper sentences. Three random words in isolation can sound like surrealist poetry. But they are less amusing when we actually want or need to understand them. Few readers would have the patience for a long novel featuring page after page of nonsense.

Is it true?

DR. WAYNE DYER: I CAN SEE CLEARLY NOW - Coming March 2014 - PBS

Is it clear? Is it beautiful? This is because, as much as any other writer and more than most, Chekhov put such a premium on writing comprehensibly, without flowery language or unnecessary adornment. But your frequent personifications, when the sea breathes, the sky looks on, the steppe basks, nature whispers, talks, grieves, etc. Ten months later, he again writes to Gorky, who seems not to have followed the advice Chekhov gave him in the earlier letter. Either forgetting or politely pretending that he is saying something entirely new, Chekhov more or less repeats the substance of his earlier letter.

You have so many modifiers that the reader has a hard time figuring out what deserves his attention, and it tires him out. It is crude and naive as well. The letter ends with a paragraph as melancholy and Chekhovian as the speeches the characters in his plays give when, like Uncle Vanya and Sonya, at the end of Uncle Vanya , they are renouncing love and passion and dedicating their entire lives to hard work and self-sacrifice. And the literary profession has a way of sucking you in. Failure and disappointments make time go by so fast that you fail to notice your real life, and the past when I was so free seems to belong to someone else, not myself.

He would be dead in five years. And he has put his finger on a problem that often affects writers and just as frequently stands in the way of clarity: the belief that every noun needs an adjective, that every sentence must be elaborate, that every turn of phrase must be lyrical, poetic, and above all original , and that it represents some sort of shameful failure of the imagination to use language in a way that can be readily understood by all. In part, this problem may have something to do with the ease and frequency with which students misinterpret the well-meaning advice of teachers who suggest they use strong adjectives, forceful verbs why should a character walk when he can stride, why should he speak when he can expostulate?

Everything we write is, in a sense, translated from another language, from the chatter we hear inside our head, translated from that interior babble more or less comprehensible to us into what we hope will be the clearer, more articulate language on the page. But during the process of that translation, basic clarity often suffers—sometimes fatally! This problem is aggravated when they have been exposed to academic jargon and feel compelled to use the terminology of a particular field of study.

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This does not mean that they should write exactly as they speak, but rather that they avoid, in their writing, anything they would not say out loud to another human being. As a sentence gets longer, lucidity becomes more of a challenge. How can we be sure of being clear when we are constructing a sentence that needs to be long because, were it shorter, were it broken up into more easily manageable components, it would be less graceful, less informative, and less beautiful.

Watching a writer spin out an extremely long but nonetheless clear sentence is like watching a tightrope walker cross from one end of the wire to the other. What is a pattern or a problem? A pattern can be the recurrence of certain kinds of imagery or events. Usually, repetition of particular aspects of a story similar events in the plot, similar descriptions, even repetition of particular words tends to render those elements more conspicuous.

These details might help me interpret the way characters think about themselves and about each other, as well as allow me to infer what the author might have wanted her reader to think by using the Bible as a frame of reference. On another subject, I also notice that the book repeatedly refers to types of education.

On a Clear Day

The story mentions books that its characters read and the different contexts in which learning takes place. Not all problems lead in interesting directions, but some definitely do and even seem to be important parts of the story. In Frankenstein, Victor works day and night to achieve his goal of bringing life to the dead, but once he realizes his goal, he is immediately repulsed by his creation and runs away. Is there something wrong with his creation, something wrong with his goal in the first place, or something wrong with Victor himself?

Just start making a list of whatever you remember from your reading, regardless of how insignificant it may seem to you now. Step 5 will cover some further elements of fiction that you might find useful at this stage as well. Do this step just off the top of your head. Keep in mind that persuasive papers rely on ample evidence and that having a lot of details to choose from can also make your paper easier to write.

It might be helpful at this point to jot down all the events or elements of the story that have some bearing on the two or three topics that seem most promising. This can give you a more visual sense of how much evidence you will have to work with on each potential topic. Based on the evidence that relates to your topic—and what you anticipate you might say about those pieces of evidence—come up with a working thesis. Once you have a working topic in mind, skim back over the story and make a more comprehensive list of the details that relate to your point.

These other examples might provide a context or some useful contrasts that could illuminate my evidence relating to Victor. As you make your notes keep track of page numbers so you can quickly find the passages in your book again and so you can easily document quoted passages when you write without having to fish back through the book. At this point, you want to include anything, anything, that might be useful, and you also want to avoid the temptation to arrive at definite conclusions about your topic.

Between the Lines Musical

Remember that one of the qualities that makes for a good interpretation is that it avoids the obvious. When you jot down ideas, you can focus on the observations from the narrator or things that certain characters say or do. These elements are certainly important. It might help you come up with more evidence if you also take into account some of the broader components that go into making fiction, things like plot, point of view, character, setting, and symbols.

Plot is the string of events that go into the narrative. Plots can be significant in themselves since chances are pretty good that some action in the story will relate to your main idea. For example, the plot of Frankenstein, which involves a man who desires to bring life to the dead and creates a monster in the process, bears some similarity to the ancient Greek story of Icarus who flew too close to the sun on his wax wings. Both tell the story of a character who reaches too ambitiously after knowledge and suffers dire consequences. Your plot could also have similarities to whole groups of other stories, all having conventional or easily recognizable plots.

These types of stories are often called genres. Some popular genres include the gothic, the romance, the detective story, the bildungsroman this is just a German term for a novel that is centered around the development of its main characters , and the novel of manners a novel that focuses on the behavior and foibles of a particular class or social group.