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  1. #11
    DaBlaRR
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    forget this reply with quote option... I suck at it. So good ol copy and paste.

    @Elven

    Getting ready to go wait tables at the strip club till 4am only added to her gloom.
    This reads a little odd. The word "go" doesn't need to be there. Unnecessary words can make a sentence hard to read, so I try to avoid them. If you also drop out the "till 4am" and "only," I think the sentence would read more smoothly and have more of an emotional "punch". You should probably add a little of her hate for her job, too. Obviously she doesn't like it, but if you said, for example, that it made her feel more worthless then I think this sentence would have more relevance to the story. If you want to mention the hours of her work, you can have her look at a clock or watch (how often do you check the time when getting ready for work?). If she's getting ready for work, as you now implied, readers will know she has night shift. If you mention it being dark or getting there somewhere in the story, you don't even have to say whether it's a.m. or p.m.. You can even just say something like, "Having to work all night at the strip club didn't make things better."

    I adjusted some of the words you suggested. I don't want to add too much hate for her job, because it isn't THAT important to go any further than the reader knowing the job sucks. I also changed the time to "odd hours of the morning" and I cut the paragraph down a bit. Thanks.

    She sat at her dresser mirror looking at the makeup she was about to apply.
    Using "Staring" instead of "looking" makes more sense. Looking implies she's actively looking for or at something. Staring implies that she's just staring at it without doing anything. I also think you can drop the "she was about to apply" and just say "her makeup," because if she's sitting in front of a dresser mirror staring at makeup, we already get the idea she's about to apply it. Of course, if she's not staring at it and is about to put it on, you can drop the "looking at the makeup" bit and just put in the action of her starting to apply it (but she pauses, of course).

    Thanks. I adjusted this part based on your suggestions.

    She paused and dissected her own face with her eyes
    She paused doing what? Staring at her makeup? Applying it? This needs an intro, like maybe she grabbed her lipstick and was about to apply it when she noticed how old she looked in the mirror. Also, you can drop "with her eyes" and "own". We already know it's her own face she's staring at, and unless she's blind, we already assume she sees with her eyes unless otherwise noted. Rogue Mutt already mentioned changing the word "dissected," which I completely agree with.

    Again thanks. To the MUTT too. I have adjusted this area as well. Specifically I changed "dissected" to "studied" and removed eyes


    Her tired look was permanent and every wrinkle had its own story to tell.
    Again, I think this can be improved. Wrinkles aren't scars, where every one could be caused by a different incident. Wrinkles normally come several at a time, so how could every one have a story to tell? Maybe you could just say something like, "Her tired look and wrinkles were permanent and told a depressing story.

    Disagree with this one. Although wrinkles aren't scars, a 36 year old shouldn't have an over abundance of them. She does and life aged her quicker than she should have aged. So those wrinkles are the result and are her story.

    Thanks for your input EL... It's very helpful.



  2. #12
    DaBlaRR
    Guest
    One other thing Jay, you shared that link before. I could be completely wrong but I just do not like writing with formulas dictating where I take things to...

    Maybe it's a novice mentality or whatever people wanna call it... but I can't write with a dictated formula such as what you suggest with that link.

  3. #13
    Rogue Mutt
    Guest
    but I can't write with a dictated formula such as what you suggest with that link.
    Most people aren't lobotomized enough for that.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaBlaRR View Post
    Disagree with this one. Although wrinkles aren't scars, a 36 year old shouldn't have an over abundance of them. She does and life aged her quicker than she should have aged. So those wrinkles are the result and are her story.
    And that's why this is your story and not mine!


    Glad to be of some help!

  5. #15
    DaBlaRR
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Elven Candy View Post
    And that's why this is your story and not mine!


    Glad to be of some help!
    Hope you don't take that as me defending myself on your critique... I put it up for discussion and critique... thanks again.

  6. #16
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    Oh, no, I didn't take it as that at all. I'm just glad you understand that you don't need to go with what everyone else thinks you should do. When I first started writing, I struggled with that aspect. When I said, "And that's why this is your story and not mine!" I meant it in respect and as a compliment to you as a person and writer.
    Last edited by Elven Candy; 01-22-2016 at 06:45 AM.

  7. #17
    Senior Member
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    Her tired look was permanent and every wrinkle had its own story to tell.
    My point is that comes from you, and you're not observing her. So the moment you put forward your opinion you intrude. And in the end, what does it tell the reader that they don't already know, or that relates to what's happening in-the-story?

    In any case, the line has been overused to the point where it's trite. As George Orwell said, “Never use a metaphor, simile, or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing in print.”

  8. #18
    Senior Member
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    One other thing Jay, you shared that link before. I could be completely wrong but I just do not like writing with formulas dictating where I take things to...
    You confuse rules and technique. Any profession has specialized knowledge of what works and why. Writing is no different. There are rules for essays and papers, for punctuation and paragraphing. Why not for tag usage, dialog and what enhances and detracts?

    It's a profession, and all professions have professional knowledge.

    “Don’t ever take a fence down until you know why it was put up.”
    ~ Robert Frost


    That aside, there's structure to storytelling. It's not just a coincidence that stories have a three act structure. Like it or not, readers have certain expectations, based on both psychology and experience. We can go against that, but when you make the reader do extra work you need to give them extra payback in the form of enjoyment.

    As I've said before. When you understand what the article is getting at, look at the books that made you feel you were living the story in real-time, and see how that author made that technique work. And if you like that author, and it works for them...

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