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Writing differently

by PollarBear14


Recently I have found myself on a compelling mission to better my vocabulary and by extension, to refine my ability to express. This may seem like both a common and boring objective, but I have been struck by a need to pursue it, and shall do so, provided the motivation persists. My eyes have been opened in such a way that I now see words the same way a buck rabbit sees a field of females, an ocean of opportunity. Opportunities to express my thoughts and observations so that they not only fulfil and please me, but so that they also engage and entertain others.

It began a few weeks ago when I made the decision to read some “classics”. Being a “classic semi-virgin” (That’s a technical term for someone who has never read a “classic” except for “To Kill a Mockingbird” as a school assessment) I didn’t know what to expect. All I knew was that the experience would be “enriching” and “character-building”, as described by the librarian. So I launched into F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby”. By page 22 I realized “The Great Gatsby” is not a book you “launch” into. Rather, if the novel is a pond, you shuffle slowly into it, admiring the elegant composition of your surroundings and carefully testing the tone and temperature of the water. You do not even reach a depth at which it is necessary to wade, in the slightly more lively waters, until about chapter 5 or 6. As a “Young Adult” reader I have become used to the surging rivers of James Patterson and Suzanne Collins novels, not this sluggish, albeit thoughtful, sort of writing. But although I found myself in unchartered literary waters with “The Great Gatsby” I was overwhelmingly entertained. I quickly started to extract my enjoyment from the beauty of the writing instead of the engagement of the plot. I found myself curious about the underlying themes of the book which in turn made the train-wreck romance intriguing. The point is that I began to appreciate a different aspect of literature, an aspect which really is “enriching”! I have since burned through “1984” and “Lord of the Flies” both of which upheld the caliber of writing that is now associated with the word “classic” in my mind.

I could see now how a vast vocabulary and an ability to express thoughtfully and clearly are necessary if I want to write things that others actually want to read. So the second stage in my quest involved scouring the internet with the search title “Best words in the English language”. I created a list of my favourites, wrote paragraphs incorporating them, and gradually imprinted them into my mind when I could find the time. The list, however, is and I expect always will be extending though.

So this is stage 3 in the mission plan; to write and to practice expression using some of the tools I have gathered from Orwell, Fitzgerald, Golding and The Vocabula Review. Hopefully one day I will be able to illuminate my thoughts with both brevity and brilliance and engage readers as the earlier mentioned authors have engaged me.

This article is a start.


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Sun Jan 20, 2013 7:43 pm
justine94 wrote a review...



I can relate to this. I am a Writing major at college...my main goal is to add a depth to my work that has not appeared in my writing before.

I like the analogy of the pond, but I think it would have fit better with the countering analogy if you had stuck with the river idea. Perhaps speaking of a muddy, sluggish river in comparison to the surging river would make more sense.

Over all, I really enjoyed reading this. Well done.

Justine94




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Wed Jan 16, 2013 8:54 am
ShakespeareWallah wrote a review...



I can relate to this.

I really can. It's really enjoying to see people writing about this transaction through genre-stuff to actual literature.

Recently I have found myself on a compelling mission to better my vocabulary and by extension, to refine my ability to express.


I like the start very much. That's what every writers wants to do and it sounds quite honest.

My eyes have been opened in such a way that I now see words the same way a buck rabbit sees a field of females, an ocean of opportunity.


I know what you are trying to say and I rather like it, it does not feel like the exact analogy, but it showcases you keen attitude.

Rather, if the novel is a pond, you shuffle slowly into it, admiring the elegant composition of your surroundings and carefully testing the tone and temperature of the water. You do not even reach a depth at which it is necessary to wade, in the slightly more lively waters, until about chapter 5 or 6.


When you refer books like this, your intention is to give an example that goes with it's [the book's] group. You are telling us about your views on "actual" works of literature.[I say actual because it affords me a chance to avoid saying "classic", because Fitzgerald isn't classic in a sense.] But what you are saying quite correct. This types of books don't give you the usual lousy set of events or plot. Some of them don't give you any plot. It's because how you showcase your story is as important as the story itself.

I could see now how a vast vocabulary and an ability to express thoughtfully and clearly are necessary if I want to write things that others actually want to read. So the second stage in my quest involved scouring the internet with the search title “Best words in the English language”.


It's not necessarily the best words you have to look for but the exact and accurate word for thing you are trying to articulate.

This article is a start.

This is a very intriguing ending. I really like it.

Overall, I felt, it was a tremendously honest and neat article.

Keep writing and If you ever want to talk about stuff like this, give me a PM or something. Maybe I could recommend something.

Puck.




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Tue Jan 15, 2013 7:24 pm
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guineapiggirl wrote a review...



"Rather, if the novel is a pond, you shuffle slowly into it, admiring the elegant composition of your surroundings and carefully testing the tone and temperature of the water."
This metaphor or whatever it is you call it I like much.
"My eyes have been opened in such a way that I now see words the same way a buck rabbit sees a field of females, an ocean of opportunity. "
This metaphor I like a little less. I would have put in a few other words and made it 'in the same way as a buck rabbit...' I would also have had it as 'females; an ocean'. I don't think either of those things are exactly incorrect, but stylistically I'd have preferred it. But whatever.
"The list however is and I expect always will be extending though.' This reads very awkwardly. I think it's the though at the end. Try reordering the words a little.
I'm reading 1984 at the moment! My English teacher recommended it. Isn't it amazing? Really disturbing, and gripping, and really good!
"and “Lord of the Flies” both" I do think there should be a comma before both. I think that would be correct.
"Hopefully one day I will be able to illuminate my thoughts with both brevity and brilliance and engage readers as the earlier mentioned authors have engaged me."
The first part of this sentence is brilliant, up until brilliance (HA HA HA! That's funny! Not really...). I think it could do with a comma there, like, "... brilliance, engaging readers as..."
Or something. At the moment it's just a bit long. If I was reading it out loud then by the end I would be lying on the floor and gasping for breath. I just tried reading it out loud, and that didn't quite happen. But my voice did go rather quiet towards the end.
Overall, I love this article, and you've used all sorts of wonderful thingys in it. Thingys being techniques?
Anyway, it's good.





Oh yeah. Blame it on the assistants Jack.
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