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Writing Style
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nhemyers
 22 Nov 2011, 22:21 #135493 Reply To Post
I've wanted to say to all these reviewers who put a personal take on their reviews and write as though it's the only truth and the only way, don't be so absolute. Read some more. Read different styles of writing.

For those who tell me, "Don't use so many adjectives", here's a quote from Scruples 2 by Judith Kranz. Kranz is the third best selling novelist of all time.

"Especially in her condition, her incredible condition, her excessively interesting, newly discovered condition that was still a secret." (P.4)

How many adjectives are in one sentence? How much was Kranz's advance per book? Roughly $3.5 mil. And oh, yes; she had pages without diagologue and shifting (simultaneous) POVs! So does John Grisham.
NickPoole
 22 Nov 2011, 22:40 #135495 Reply To Post
I don't know Krantz, but that's a bit of point of view imbuing the narration.

Pregnant, I'd guess. But the point of view will effectively be character voice. And anything goes in dialogue, as long as it works.

Actually anything in anything...as long as it works.
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willow55
 22 Nov 2011, 23:49 #135498 Reply To Post
Quote: nhemyers, Tuesday, 22 Nov 2011 22:21
I've wanted to say to all these reviewers who put a personal take on their reviews and write as though it's the only truth and the only way, don't be so absolute. Read some more. Read different styles of writing.

For those who tell me, "Don't use so many adjectives", here's a quote from Scruples 2 by Judith Kranz. Kranz is the third best selling novelist of all time.

"Especially in her condition, her incredible condition, her excessively interesting, newly discovered condition that was still a secret." (P.4)

How many adjectives are in one sentence? How much was Kranz's advance per book? Roughly $3.5 mil. And oh, yes; she had pages without diagologue and shifting (simultaneous) POVs! So does John Grisham.


'All these reviewers who put a personal take on their reviews' - isn't that what this site is about? Don't you post your work here to get a personal take on the writing? I'd agree there are no absolutes, but what you're asking for and what you get is just an opinion, which you are then at liberty to accept or ignore ...

nhemyers
 23 Nov 2011, 00:28 #135503 Reply To Post
You are right; it's an opinion. Perhaps what I'm looking for is a broader more informed opinion, not an insular one that that confines someone's writing to a narrow orbit as if to say, you did not choose to do it this way (the way I prefer) so you are wrong. What you have done is not allowed.

Pehaps what I'd like is for someone to take the time to do some research about something they do not know instead of saying this has no basis in fact, this is farfetched, when it does - a fact the reviewer is unaware of. We cannot help each other when we review from a perspective of ignorance or laziness or indifference. We run the risk of tearing each other down or at the very least sending someone who lacks confidence in the wrong direction.

It's a learning curve for all. Above all there is no need for condescending reviews that are personal. Stick to reviewing the writing - not the writer - especially when what you have to say is less than friendly and polite. And there is no reason for that type of review.
nhemyers
 23 Nov 2011, 00:31 #135504 Reply To Post
Quote: willow55, Tuesday, 22 Nov 2011 23:49
Quote: nhemyers, Tuesday, 22 Nov 2011 22:21
I've wanted to say to all these reviewers who put a personal take on their reviews and write as though it's the only truth and the only way, don't be so absolute. Read some more. Read different styles of writing.

For those who tell me, "Don't use so many adjectives", here's a quote from Scruples 2 by Judith Kranz. Kranz is the third best selling novelist of all time.

"Especially in her condition, her incredible condition, her excessively interesting, newly discovered condition that was still a secret." (P.4)

How many adjectives are in one sentence? How much was Kranz's advance per book? Roughly $3.5 mil. And oh, yes; she had pages without diagologue and shifting (simultaneous) POVs! So does John Grisham.


'All these reviewers who put a personal take on their reviews' - isn't that what this site is about? Don't you post your work here to get a personal take on the writing? I'd agree there are no absolutes, but what you're asking for and what you get is just an opinion, which you are then at liberty to accept or ignore ...



nhemyers
 23 Nov 2011, 00:58 #135505 Reply To Post
Quote: willow55, Tuesday, 22 Nov 2011 23:49
Quote: nhemyers, Tuesday, 22 Nov 2011 22:21
I've wanted to say to all these reviewers who put a personal take on their reviews and write as though it's the only truth and the only way, don't be so absolute. Read some more. Read different styles of writing.

For those who tell me, "Don't use so many adjectives", here's a quote from Scruples 2 by Judith Kranz. Kranz is the third best selling novelist of all time.

"Especially in her condition, her incredible condition, her excessively interesting, newly discovered condition that was still a secret." (P.4)

How many adjectives are in one sentence? How much was Kranz's advance per book? Roughly $3.5 mil. And oh, yes; she had pages without diagologue and shifting (simultaneous) POVs! So does John Grisham.


'All these reviewers who put a personal take on their reviews' - isn't that what this site is about? Don't you post your work here to get a personal take on the writing? I'd agree there are no absolutes, but what you're asking for and what you get is just an opinion, which you are then at liberty to accept or ignore ...


You're right. Dialogue is how a person speaks. Characters' speech can be down to earth, highflown, highbrow or plain laugh-out-loud funny. It shows social status, educational status, world view and any number of things. And it does not have to be grammatically correct. As a matter of fact many characters - and some of the most interesting ones - speak with total disregard for, or ignorance of standard English.
Malcolm
 30 Nov 2011, 02:43 #135912 Reply To Post
Quote: nhemyers, Tuesday, 22 Nov 2011 22:21
I've wanted to say to all these reviewers who put a personal take on their reviews and write as though it's the only truth and the only way, don't be so absolute. Read some more. Read different styles of writing.

For those who tell me, "Don't use so many adjectives", here's a quote from Scruples 2 by Judith Kranz. Kranz is the third best selling novelist of all time.

"Especially in her condition, her incredible condition, her excessively interesting, newly discovered condition that was still a secret." (P.4)

How many adjectives are in one sentence? How much was Kranz's advance per book? Roughly $3.5 mil. And oh, yes; she had pages without diagologue and shifting (simultaneous) POVs! So does John Grisham.


Do you imagine Kranz is paid by the adjective?

As Nick says, anything goes if it works. If someone says, "Love the adjectives," it's working; if they don't mention the adjectives, it's probably working; if they say you've got too many adjectives, it's not working.

Kranz's use of adjectives doesn't give anyone license to throw adjectives around all they like. Some sentences can't support them. Every adjective must be judged on its own merit, in its own context.
No stars. No charts. Just crits.
Jeffrey Jones
 30 Nov 2011, 08:42 #135925 Reply To Post
Personally, I like a good adjective. It's the bad adjectives I can't stand.

I must have read hundreds of excerpts here and elsewhere where a child is described as 'small', or a building is 'large', etc. These words have no meaning as sizes are comparative. The same is true of words like 'beautiful' and 'handsome' - as everyone's understanding of these concepts is different, these words do not help when describing what a person looks like. In fact, the opposite: they make the reader wonder what the author's idea of handsomeness might be, and in doing so distract from the storytelling. (Now someone is bound to point out that Jane Austen regularly described characters as 'handsome', but her meaning was slightly different to the current usage.)


sulcus
 30 Nov 2011, 13:10 #135956 Reply To Post
Quote: Jeffrey Jones, Wednesday, 30 Nov 2011 08:42
Personally, I like a good adjective. It's the bad adjectives I can't stand.

I must have read hundreds of excerpts here and elsewhere where a child is described as 'small', or a building is 'large', etc. These words have no meaning as sizes are comparative. The same is true of words like 'beautiful' and 'handsome' - as everyone's understanding of these concepts is different, these words do not help when describing what a person looks like. In fact, the opposite: they make the reader wonder what the author's idea of handsomeness might be, and in doing so distract from the storytelling. (Now someone is bound to point out that Jane Austen regularly described characters as 'handsome', but her meaning was slightly different to the current usage.)




or 'happy' or 'sad'
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Malcolm
 01 Dec 2011, 03:09 #136002 Reply To Post
Quote: Jeffrey Jones, Wednesday, 30 Nov 2011 08:42
Personally, I like a good adjective. It's the bad adjectives I can't stand.

I must have read hundreds of excerpts here and elsewhere where a child is described as 'small', or a building is 'large', etc. These words have no meaning as sizes are comparative. The same is true of words like 'beautiful' and 'handsome' - as everyone's understanding of these concepts is different, these words do not help when describing what a person looks like. In fact, the opposite: they make the reader wonder what the author's idea of handsomeness might be, and in doing so distract from the storytelling. (Now someone is bound to point out that Jane Austen regularly described characters as 'handsome', but her meaning was slightly different to the current usage.)




Stephen King says if you insist on describing everything in detail, you risk writing an instruction manual instead of a narrative. Surely some things are best left to the reader's imagination?
No stars. No charts. Just crits.
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