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Re: Tell don't show? (37177 GIBJ))

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  • wings081
    Dera GIBJ Re: Every writing expert since Moses has a formula When Moses trotted down Mount Sinai with his Decalogue of Moral Imperatives, little did he
    Message 1 of 17 , Jul 31, 2008
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      Dera GIBJ
      Re: "Every writing expert since Moses has a formula"

      When Moses trotted down Mount Sinai with his Decalogue of Moral
      Imperatives, little did he realise at that time,how many rules would
      be broken, time and time again.
      However, no matter how much rules are ignored, they are a guide
      to a correct process of comportment, the following of which makes
      life less complicated.

      As always

      Wings


      --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "goddessinbluejeans"
      <goddessinbluejeans@...> wrote:
      >
      > Dear Douglas: Are you suggesting that a person who wrote a
      writers'
      > manual has the last word on a literary masterpiece? Cliche is one
      > thing, structure another. How very droll to continue ad naseum with
      > another's rehashed thought. Quick, call the thought police! Douglas
      > is not using the correct "cliches". Sterotyping drives me bonkers!
      > Although it is an easy trap to fall into, the pit, or firepit in
      your
      > heretic case would certainly give rise to the question; Why bother
      > with technicalities if the outcome is less than inspired? Give me
      > inspiration any day!
      > Now I understand your remarks, thanks for qualifying this for me.
      You
      > are more concerned with the suggested way of writing in contrast to
      > character profiling. Every writing expert since Moses has a
      formula,
      > but I am sure it is not set in stone. However, grammar and some
      > compositional rules are strict with all the accompanying protocol.
      > Boundaries aside, if you achieve a better end result then you
      should
      > take liberties and use your artistic license.> ps by "bones" I
      didn't
      > mean the character's bones, but rather an analogy to the structure
      of
      > a literary work in reference to your examples sited here. Hope I
      > didnt confound the problem!lol! gibj
      > "douglas.ryan68" <douglas.ryan68@> wrote:
      > >
      > > I'm not suggesting to add to the "plethora of unmitigated and
      > > unstructured writing" by any means. However, I'm noting that some
      > > writers take a bit of good advice as if it was handed down by
      > Mathew,
      > > Mark, Luke or John and the writing suffers from it. Insignificant
      > > events that should be told quickly get shown "dramatically"
      > >
      > > Also new writers get tips that they need to "show" the
      character's
      > > appearance. Here's an example. (source
      > http://www.holtuncensored.com/
      > > ten_mistakes.html )
      > >
      > > "Or try this from Faye Kellerman in "Street Dreams": "[Louise's]
      > > features were regular, and once she had been pretty. Now she was
      > > handsome in her black skirt, suit, and crisp, white blouse."
      > >
      > > Well, that's it for Louise, poor thing. Can you see the character
      > in
      > > front of you? A previous sentence tells us that Louise has "blunt-
      > cut
      > > hair" framing an "oval face," which helps, but not much -
      millions
      > of
      > > women have a face like that. What makes Louise distinctive?
      Again,
      > we
      > > may think we know what Kellerman means by "pretty" and
      > > "handsome" (good luck), but the inexcusable word here
      is "regular,"
      > > as in "her features were regular." What *are* "regular"
      features? "
      > >
      > > If Louise's appearance isn't vital to the story, why bloat it up
      > > more? Blunt cut hair framing an oval face tells me of a middle
      aged
      > > woman out of touch with the latest fashion in hair styles and
      > > probably everything else too. So what's wrong with that?
      > >
      > > Or from the same source our expert attacks another passage:
      > >
      > > ""This was a tall blond tomboy who grew up with all guy friends.
      A
      > > natural beauty who still had age on her side, being thirty; she
      > > didn't give a thought to taming her flyaway hair or painting
      makeup
      > > on her smooth Swedish skin."
      > >
      > > Here I *think* I know what Sheehy means, but I'm not sure. Don't
      > let
      > > the reader make such assumptions. You're the author; it's your
      > charge
      > > to show us what you mean with authentic detail. Don't pretend the
      > job
      > > is accomplished by cliches such as "smooth Swedish
      skin," "flyaway
      > > hair," "tall blond tomboy," "the surfer girl" - how smooth? how
      > tall?
      > > how blond? " Flyaway hair might be a cliche, but it's probably
      > > sufficient. In "How blond" is the critic serious? Yes, there
      > > different shades of blonde (dirty blond, strawberry blond, etc)
      but
      > I
      > > suspect that critic would attack that description too. Or the
      > author
      > > wrote that the hair was dyed blond, would the question be "What
      > brand
      > > of hair colouring?" Having said all that, I'm not really sure
      what
      > a
      > > "Swedish tan" is supposed to mean, though. The again, the author
      > was
      > > probably trying to follow the "show, don't tell" "rule."
      > >
      > > Douglas
      > > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "goddessinbluejeans"
      > > <goddessinbluejeans@> wrote:
      > > >
      > > > Dear Suzianne: To have good bones is to have good structure.
      > This
      > > > classic structure is for the benefit of the writer and the
      > reader.
      > > > The techniques of writing, for example, grammar, style,
      > > composition,
      > > > et cerra is the beginning of good writing.
      > > > Today there is a plethora of unmitigated and unstructured
      writing
      > > > which is, in my opinion, just poor writing, and I would rather
      > not
      > > > read it. There are the exceptions, but I just become frustrated
      > and
      > > > move on to the next book.
      > > > At the same time, I can understand Douglas' point of view in
      > > regards
      > > > to creative writing needing the freedom to express itself.
      > However,
      > > > with all art forms there is a pre-existing nonmenclature which
      is
      > > > there for our benefit. Without this structure, the reader can
      get
      > > > confused, and like running up a sandhill, without structure, it
      > > takes
      > > > a longer time to get to the top!gibj--- In
      > > > ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "Susan Donahue" <suzianne411@>
      > wrote:
      > > > >
      > > > > Dear Douglas,
      > > > >
      > > > > Writing, like any other skill or art, has rules. Those rules
      > > > evolved
      > > > > because they are effective. Those who practice the art learn
      > not
      > > > > only the rules, but the reasons they were adopted. Knowing
      > those
      > > > > reasons, the writer is free to break them to suit his or her
      > > > purpose.
      > > > >
      > > > > The problem with neophyte writers flaunting the rules, is
      that
      > > they
      > > > > often do so because they are lazy and just can't be
      bothered.
      > > > > Failure to learn the rules or to employ them usually results
      in
      > > > > writing that is not up to standard. The inexperienced writer
      > > > becomes
      > > > > discouraged with writing that dissapoints, and abandons the
      > > effort.
      > > > A
      > > > > lot of good talent is lost that way.
      > > > >
      > > > > If you are teaching the craft, try to steer your students
      > through
      > > > > charted waters rather than have them waste their efforts and
      > > become
      > > > > lost. When they gain experience, they can safely depart from
      > the
      > > > > methods that are proven to work and explore other ways to
      > attain
      > > > the
      > > > > best results.
      > > > >
      > > > >
      > > > > Suzianne
      > > > >
      > > > > P.S. Regarding "Show, don't tell," a writer should do both.
      A
      > > > good
      > > > > writer knows when each is more effective.
      > > > >
      > > > >
      > > > >
      > > > > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "douglas.ryan68"
      > > > > <douglas.ryan68@> wrote:
      > > > > >
      > > > > > There are so many "rules" that new writers are told.
      > Don't
      > > > > head-
      > > > > > hop. Third person omniscient confuses readers and doesn't
      let
      > > > deep
      > > > > in
      > > > > > a character's head, etc. I've started to read "A
      Confederacy
      > of
      > > > > > Dunces" by John Kennedy Toole. It got rejected many times
      > > during
      > > > > the
      > > > > > author's life. After his death, his mother kept submitting
      is
      > > and
      > > > > > it's won the Pulitzer Prize in fiction. I can see why it
      got
      > > > > > rejected. Toole broke one "rule" after another. He head-
      > hopped.
      > > > In
      > > > > > the scene where character was in the movie, he switched
      from
      > > the
      > > > > > character's comments while watching, to the manager and
      > > employ's
      > > > > > comments about him, and back. You're not "supposed" to do
      > > > > this. "One
      > > > > > character, one scene." However, by doing this Toole let the
      > > > reader
      > > > > in
      > > > > > on more and gave an impression of other people's opinion of
      > the
      > > > > > character. In doing so, Toole broke the limited
      > > > perspective "rule."
      > > > > >
      > > > > > I'm not saying to broke the "rules" just for the sake
      of
      > > > > > breaking them. Rather, keep in mind why the "rules" exist
      and
      > > > work
      > > > > > maybe 3/4 of the time and balance that against what you're
      > > trying
      > > > > to
      > > > > > accomplish.
      > > > > >
      > > > > > Douglas
      > > > > >
      > > > > >
      > > > > > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "Michael McGowan"
      > > > > > <werewolf7@> wrote:
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > That's the problem with "rules" is the very second you
      come
      > > up
      > > > > with
      > > > > > one you come across the situation where it doesn't apply.
      I
      > > > think
      > > > > > "show don't tell" is important because keeping it in hand
      > > > prevents
      > > > > > lazy writing. For example, introducing a character,
      instead
      > of
      > > > > going
      > > > > > on paragraph after paragraph describing what this person
      does
      > > or
      > > > > > their personality, put these things in action. Set the
      > > > introducing
      > > > > > scene where they work and, for example, if they are a
      > > controlling
      > > > > > personality stage the entire scene around them "going off"
      > > > because
      > > > > > things refuse to stay in their control.
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > But you're right- "show don't tell" seems to indicate
      that
      > > you
      > > > > > should never show, rather it should be more like the
      > Gambler's
      > > > > > mantra- "know when to show, know when to tell." Obviously
      > with
      > > > > Lewis
      > > > > > or Tolkein who had enormous bits of mythological backstory
      to
      > > > > cover,
      > > > > > telling was better. Also keep in mind that every example
      you
      > > > bring
      > > > > > up are "classical" writers who worked at a time when
      writing
      > > was
      > > > > not
      > > > > > expected to be as efficient as it is today.
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > Even though I [want to] write novels, I always use movies
      > as
      > > a
      > > > > > guide, because by their nature they have to be hyper-
      > efficient
      > > > > about
      > > > > > how they introduce or describe something- for the most part
      > > they
      > > > > > aren't allowed the luxury of prologues, narration, or
      > backstory
      > > > or
      > > > > > page after page describing the curious nature of Hobbits.
      > > > Probably
      > > > > > the best example I know of of "show don't tell," one that
      > > > captures
      > > > > > how it should be used, came from the movie "Se7en." When
      > > Morgan
      > > > > > Freeman's character mentions that a line came from the
      > > "Merchant
      > > > of
      > > > > > Venice," Brad Pitt replied, "Never saw it." In those three
      > > words
      > > > I
      > > > > > had his entire character figured out- good at his job, but
      > not
      > > > > > particularly well schooled, and likely distrustful of those
      > who
      > > > > are.
      > > > > > In a nutshull, I think that's what it's all about- dropping
      > > clues
      > > > > > rather than explaining when possible.
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > ----- Original Message -----
      > > > > > > From: douglas.ryan68
      > > > > > > To: ticket2write@yahoogroups.com
      > > > > > > Sent: Saturday, July 26, 2008 10:41 PM
      > > > > > > Subject: [ticket2write] Tell don't show?
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > The advice, "Show don't tell" is oft repeated like a
      > mantra
      > > > in
      > > > > > > writer's circles. However, is telling instead of
      showing
      > > > better
      > > > > > in
      > > > > > > some cases. The prose is often more efficient with the
      > word
      > > > > count
      > > > > > and
      > > > > > > narrative moves faster. Greats such as Charles Dickens
      > > > > told, "It
      > > > > > was
      > > > > > > the best of times. It was the worst of times." That's
      > > > certainly
      > > > > > > telling. CS Lewis does a fair bit of telling in his
      > > > Chronicles
      > > > > of
      > > > > > > Narnia. Show is usually prefered, but telling is
      > sometimes
      > > > > better.
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > So am I nuts? Are you gathering wood to burn the
      heretic
      > at
      > > > the
      > > > > > stake?
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > Douglas
      > > > > > >
      > > > > >
      > > > >
      > > >
      > >
      >
    • goddessinbluejeans
      Dear Wings: Thank-you for the ad hock lesson. It was a pleasure to find out what decalogue means as well as comportment. The Ten Commandments or Decalogue
      Message 2 of 17 , Aug 1, 2008
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        Dear Wings: Thank-you for the ad hock lesson. It was a pleasure to
        find out what "decalogue" means as well as comportment. The Ten
        Commandments or Decalogue being the blueprint to correct living. It
        is wise to follow such astute wisdom from "those in the know" and
        certainly Moses the epitome of the wise Prophet of Old. Can the
        written language go back any further than the 5-6,000 year history of
        the Hebrew language? Which language? Sumerian? I was taught Hebrew
        being the oldest written language, perhaps I am incorrect?
        As far as comportment, or how one conducts oneself in the language
        arts; manners can get too "mannerly" and thus become self-limiting or
        self-absorbing in style. For example, a well-written piece could be
        too "stiff" and not relay a sense of the writer's unique style.
        Manners could preclude the authentic author and like Picasso, a need
        to "break-away" from the Royal Academy teachings to create unique
        art. In the literary field I am thinking about Kurt Vonnegut
        Slaughterhouse Five for example. A very unusal way of writing.
        Personally I found the expression unusual but I can appreciate the
        orginality of the piece, just not my taste. I prefer JD Salinger, or
        Ray Bradbury for example. Maybe I am just lazy not wanting to look
        before I leap. It takes patience to read through creative writers'
        work, but it could be worthwhile in the long run. Which authors are
        your favs? GIBJ
        - In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "wings081" <wings081@...> wrote:
        >
        > Dera GIBJ
        > Re: "Every writing expert since Moses has a formula"
        >
        > When Moses trotted down Mount Sinai with his Decalogue of Moral
        > Imperatives, little did he realise at that time,how many rules
        would
        > be broken, time and time again.
        > However, no matter how much rules are ignored, they are a guide
        > to a correct process of comportment, the following of which makes
        > life less complicated.
        >
        > As always
        >
        > Wings
        >
        >
        > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "goddessinbluejeans"
        > <goddessinbluejeans@> wrote:
        > >
        > > Dear Douglas: Are you suggesting that a person who wrote a
        > writers'
        > > manual has the last word on a literary masterpiece? Cliche is one
        > > thing, structure another. How very droll to continue ad naseum
        with
        > > another's rehashed thought. Quick, call the thought police!
        Douglas
        > > is not using the correct "cliches". Sterotyping drives me
        bonkers!
        > > Although it is an easy trap to fall into, the pit, or firepit in
        > your
        > > heretic case would certainly give rise to the question; Why
        bother
        > > with technicalities if the outcome is less than inspired? Give me
        > > inspiration any day!
        > > Now I understand your remarks, thanks for qualifying this for me.
        > You
        > > are more concerned with the suggested way of writing in contrast
        to
        > > character profiling. Every writing expert since Moses has a
        > formula,
        > > but I am sure it is not set in stone. However, grammar and some
        > > compositional rules are strict with all the accompanying
        protocol.
        > > Boundaries aside, if you achieve a better end result then you
        > should
        > > take liberties and use your artistic license.> ps by "bones" I
        > didn't
        > > mean the character's bones, but rather an analogy to the
        structure
        > of
        > > a literary work in reference to your examples sited here. Hope I
        > > didnt confound the problem!lol! gibj
        > > "douglas.ryan68" <douglas.ryan68@> wrote:
        > > >
        > > > I'm not suggesting to add to the "plethora of unmitigated and
        > > > unstructured writing" by any means. However, I'm noting that
        some
        > > > writers take a bit of good advice as if it was handed down by
        > > Mathew,
        > > > Mark, Luke or John and the writing suffers from it.
        Insignificant
        > > > events that should be told quickly get shown "dramatically"
        > > >
        > > > Also new writers get tips that they need to "show" the
        > character's
        > > > appearance. Here's an example. (source
        > > http://www.holtuncensored.com/
        > > > ten_mistakes.html )
        > > >
        > > > "Or try this from Faye Kellerman in "Street
        Dreams": "[Louise's]
        > > > features were regular, and once she had been pretty. Now she
        was
        > > > handsome in her black skirt, suit, and crisp, white blouse."
        > > >
        > > > Well, that's it for Louise, poor thing. Can you see the
        character
        > > in
        > > > front of you? A previous sentence tells us that Louise
        has "blunt-
        > > cut
        > > > hair" framing an "oval face," which helps, but not much -
        > millions
        > > of
        > > > women have a face like that. What makes Louise distinctive?
        > Again,
        > > we
        > > > may think we know what Kellerman means by "pretty" and
        > > > "handsome" (good luck), but the inexcusable word here
        > is "regular,"
        > > > as in "her features were regular." What *are* "regular"
        > features? "
        > > >
        > > > If Louise's appearance isn't vital to the story, why bloat it
        up
        > > > more? Blunt cut hair framing an oval face tells me of a middle
        > aged
        > > > woman out of touch with the latest fashion in hair styles and
        > > > probably everything else too. So what's wrong with that?
        > > >
        > > > Or from the same source our expert attacks another passage:
        > > >
        > > > ""This was a tall blond tomboy who grew up with all guy
        friends.
        > A
        > > > natural beauty who still had age on her side, being thirty; she
        > > > didn't give a thought to taming her flyaway hair or painting
        > makeup
        > > > on her smooth Swedish skin."
        > > >
        > > > Here I *think* I know what Sheehy means, but I'm not sure.
        Don't
        > > let
        > > > the reader make such assumptions. You're the author; it's your
        > > charge
        > > > to show us what you mean with authentic detail. Don't pretend
        the
        > > job
        > > > is accomplished by cliches such as "smooth Swedish
        > skin," "flyaway
        > > > hair," "tall blond tomboy," "the surfer girl" - how smooth? how
        > > tall?
        > > > how blond? " Flyaway hair might be a cliche, but it's probably
        > > > sufficient. In "How blond" is the critic serious? Yes, there
        > > > different shades of blonde (dirty blond, strawberry blond, etc)
        > but
        > > I
        > > > suspect that critic would attack that description too. Or the
        > > author
        > > > wrote that the hair was dyed blond, would the question be "What
        > > brand
        > > > of hair colouring?" Having said all that, I'm not really sure
        > what
        > > a
        > > > "Swedish tan" is supposed to mean, though. The again, the
        author
        > > was
        > > > probably trying to follow the "show, don't tell" "rule."
        > > >
        > > > Douglas
        > > > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "goddessinbluejeans"
        > > > <goddessinbluejeans@> wrote:
        > > > >
        > > > > Dear Suzianne: To have good bones is to have good structure.
        > > This
        > > > > classic structure is for the benefit of the writer and the
        > > reader.
        > > > > The techniques of writing, for example, grammar, style,
        > > > composition,
        > > > > et cerra is the beginning of good writing.
        > > > > Today there is a plethora of unmitigated and unstructured
        > writing
        > > > > which is, in my opinion, just poor writing, and I would
        rather
        > > not
        > > > > read it. There are the exceptions, but I just become
        frustrated
        > > and
        > > > > move on to the next book.
        > > > > At the same time, I can understand Douglas' point of view in
        > > > regards
        > > > > to creative writing needing the freedom to express itself.
        > > However,
        > > > > with all art forms there is a pre-existing nonmenclature
        which
        > is
        > > > > there for our benefit. Without this structure, the reader can
        > get
        > > > > confused, and like running up a sandhill, without structure,
        it
        > > > takes
        > > > > a longer time to get to the top!gibj--- In
        > > > > ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "Susan Donahue" <suzianne411@>
        > > wrote:
        > > > > >
        > > > > > Dear Douglas,
        > > > > >
        > > > > > Writing, like any other skill or art, has rules. Those
        rules
        > > > > evolved
        > > > > > because they are effective. Those who practice the art
        learn
        > > not
        > > > > > only the rules, but the reasons they were adopted. Knowing
        > > those
        > > > > > reasons, the writer is free to break them to suit his or
        her
        > > > > purpose.
        > > > > >
        > > > > > The problem with neophyte writers flaunting the rules, is
        > that
        > > > they
        > > > > > often do so because they are lazy and just can't be
        > bothered.
        > > > > > Failure to learn the rules or to employ them usually
        results
        > in
        > > > > > writing that is not up to standard. The inexperienced
        writer
        > > > > becomes
        > > > > > discouraged with writing that dissapoints, and abandons the
        > > > effort.
        > > > > A
        > > > > > lot of good talent is lost that way.
        > > > > >
        > > > > > If you are teaching the craft, try to steer your students
        > > through
        > > > > > charted waters rather than have them waste their efforts
        and
        > > > become
        > > > > > lost. When they gain experience, they can safely depart
        from
        > > the
        > > > > > methods that are proven to work and explore other ways to
        > > attain
        > > > > the
        > > > > > best results.
        > > > > >
        > > > > >
        > > > > > Suzianne
        > > > > >
        > > > > > P.S. Regarding "Show, don't tell," a writer should do
        both.
        > A
        > > > > good
        > > > > > writer knows when each is more effective.
        > > > > >
        > > > > >
        > > > > >
        > > > > > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "douglas.ryan68"
        > > > > > <douglas.ryan68@> wrote:
        > > > > > >
        > > > > > > There are so many "rules" that new writers are told.
        > > Don't
        > > > > > head-
        > > > > > > hop. Third person omniscient confuses readers and doesn't
        > let
        > > > > deep
        > > > > > in
        > > > > > > a character's head, etc. I've started to read "A
        > Confederacy
        > > of
        > > > > > > Dunces" by John Kennedy Toole. It got rejected many times
        > > > during
        > > > > > the
        > > > > > > author's life. After his death, his mother kept
        submitting
        > is
        > > > and
        > > > > > > it's won the Pulitzer Prize in fiction. I can see why it
        > got
        > > > > > > rejected. Toole broke one "rule" after another. He head-
        > > hopped.
        > > > > In
        > > > > > > the scene where character was in the movie, he switched
        > from
        > > > the
        > > > > > > character's comments while watching, to the manager and
        > > > employ's
        > > > > > > comments about him, and back. You're not "supposed" to do
        > > > > > this. "One
        > > > > > > character, one scene." However, by doing this Toole let
        the
        > > > > reader
        > > > > > in
        > > > > > > on more and gave an impression of other people's opinion
        of
        > > the
        > > > > > > character. In doing so, Toole broke the limited
        > > > > perspective "rule."
        > > > > > >
        > > > > > > I'm not saying to broke the "rules" just for the
        sake
        > of
        > > > > > > breaking them. Rather, keep in mind why the "rules" exist
        > and
        > > > > work
        > > > > > > maybe 3/4 of the time and balance that against what
        you're
        > > > trying
        > > > > > to
        > > > > > > accomplish.
        > > > > > >
        > > > > > > Douglas
        > > > > > >
        > > > > > >
        > > > > > > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "Michael McGowan"
        > > > > > > <werewolf7@> wrote:
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > That's the problem with "rules" is the very second you
        > come
        > > > up
        > > > > > with
        > > > > > > one you come across the situation where it doesn't
        apply.
        > I
        > > > > think
        > > > > > > "show don't tell" is important because keeping it in hand
        > > > > prevents
        > > > > > > lazy writing. For example, introducing a character,
        > instead
        > > of
        > > > > > going
        > > > > > > on paragraph after paragraph describing what this person
        > does
        > > > or
        > > > > > > their personality, put these things in action. Set the
        > > > > introducing
        > > > > > > scene where they work and, for example, if they are a
        > > > controlling
        > > > > > > personality stage the entire scene around them "going
        off"
        > > > > because
        > > > > > > things refuse to stay in their control.
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > But you're right- "show don't tell" seems to indicate
        > that
        > > > you
        > > > > > > should never show, rather it should be more like the
        > > Gambler's
        > > > > > > mantra- "know when to show, know when to tell."
        Obviously
        > > with
        > > > > > Lewis
        > > > > > > or Tolkein who had enormous bits of mythological
        backstory
        > to
        > > > > > cover,
        > > > > > > telling was better. Also keep in mind that every example
        > you
        > > > > bring
        > > > > > > up are "classical" writers who worked at a time when
        > writing
        > > > was
        > > > > > not
        > > > > > > expected to be as efficient as it is today.
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > Even though I [want to] write novels, I always use
        movies
        > > as
        > > > a
        > > > > > > guide, because by their nature they have to be hyper-
        > > efficient
        > > > > > about
        > > > > > > how they introduce or describe something- for the most
        part
        > > > they
        > > > > > > aren't allowed the luxury of prologues, narration, or
        > > backstory
        > > > > or
        > > > > > > page after page describing the curious nature of
        Hobbits.
        > > > > Probably
        > > > > > > the best example I know of of "show don't tell," one that
        > > > > captures
        > > > > > > how it should be used, came from the movie "Se7en." When
        > > > Morgan
        > > > > > > Freeman's character mentions that a line came from the
        > > > "Merchant
        > > > > of
        > > > > > > Venice," Brad Pitt replied, "Never saw it." In those
        three
        > > > words
        > > > > I
        > > > > > > had his entire character figured out- good at his job,
        but
        > > not
        > > > > > > particularly well schooled, and likely distrustful of
        those
        > > who
        > > > > > are.
        > > > > > > In a nutshull, I think that's what it's all about-
        dropping
        > > > clues
        > > > > > > rather than explaining when possible.
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > ----- Original Message -----
        > > > > > > > From: douglas.ryan68
        > > > > > > > To: ticket2write@yahoogroups.com
        > > > > > > > Sent: Saturday, July 26, 2008 10:41 PM
        > > > > > > > Subject: [ticket2write] Tell don't show?
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > The advice, "Show don't tell" is oft repeated like a
        > > mantra
        > > > > in
        > > > > > > > writer's circles. However, is telling instead of
        > showing
        > > > > better
        > > > > > > in
        > > > > > > > some cases. The prose is often more efficient with
        the
        > > word
        > > > > > count
        > > > > > > and
        > > > > > > > narrative moves faster. Greats such as Charles
        Dickens
        > > > > > told, "It
        > > > > > > was
        > > > > > > > the best of times. It was the worst of times." That's
        > > > > certainly
        > > > > > > > telling. CS Lewis does a fair bit of telling in his
        > > > > Chronicles
        > > > > > of
        > > > > > > > Narnia. Show is usually prefered, but telling is
        > > sometimes
        > > > > > better.
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > So am I nuts? Are you gathering wood to burn the
        > heretic
        > > at
        > > > > the
        > > > > > > stake?
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > Douglas
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > >
        > > > > >
        > > > >
        > > >
        > >
        >
      • writing_queen_2007
        Your absolutly right. I read a book, don t remember the tittle, but they explained that telling can be better then showwing, vice versa. You can alsways
        Message 3 of 17 , Aug 1, 2008
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          Your absolutly right. I read a book, don't remember the tittle, but
          they explained that telling can be better then showwing, vice versa.
          You can alsways combine them as well.

          --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "douglas.ryan68"
          <douglas.ryan68@...> wrote:
          >
          > The advice, "Show don't tell" is oft repeated like a mantra in
          > writer's circles. However, is telling instead of showing better in
          > some cases. The prose is often more efficient with the word count and
          > narrative moves faster. Greats such as Charles Dickens told, "It was
          > the best of times. It was the worst of times." That's certainly
          > telling. CS Lewis does a fair bit of telling in his Chronicles of
          > Narnia. Show is usually prefered, but telling is sometimes better.
          >
          > So am I nuts? Are you gathering wood to burn the heretic at the stake?
          >
          > Douglas
          >
        • douglas.ryan68
          Sorry for not letting the issue die, but this is something I ve been thinking of at work. There have been times when I ve read how characters wrinkled his/her
          Message 4 of 17 , Aug 5, 2008
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            Sorry for not letting the issue die, but this is something I've been
            thinking of at work. There have been times when I've read how
            characters "wrinkled his/her nose" when the author is trying to
            "show" the character's reaction to what's happening or what the other
            character says. First of, and a relatively minor point is that noses
            don't wrinkle! I tried myself in the mirror and it doesn't work, the
            bit between the eyes furrows and the nostrils flare, but the nose
            itself is inflexible cartilage that won't wrinkle. So when showing, I
            guess make sure that the "shown" reaction is physically something
            actually happens and even can happen. However, a bigger point is that
            sometimes the reader has a completely different idea what the "shown"
            reaction (or even the series of events, etc) even means then the
            author does. There have been times when I thought wrinkling the nose
            was supposed to be a cute reaction, but the author took umbrage to
            that opinion and informed me otherwise.

            Today I finished reading "A Confederacy of Dunces" and towards the
            end there was a bit of telling that something along the lines "Mr.
            Levy watched the anger and frustration play on his wife's face." That
            might not be exactly how it went, but the point is that was telling
            that I feel was more effective then the "showing" of what her lips,
            eyes, wrinkling nose, etc did. I found my imagination was more
            engaged by the telling then the author leading through the "showing."
            That made it all the more satisfying to read. So in the case telling
            worked quite well.

            If Vincent van Gogh had listened to an art teacher to the letter to
            use such and such size brush to paint such and such scenes and never
            use knives to paint, we would never of had is masterpieces. It's the
            same with writing. I can agree that one should know the conventions
            and grammar, but sometimes you need to trust your artistic instincts
            when the rules and stock advice needs to be broken.


            --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "writing_queen_2007"
            <writing_queen_2007@...> wrote:
            >
            > Your absolutly right. I read a book, don't remember the tittle, but
            > they explained that telling can be better then showwing, vice versa.
            > You can alsways combine them as well.
            >
            > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "douglas.ryan68"
            > <douglas.ryan68@> wrote:
            > >
            > > The advice, "Show don't tell" is oft repeated like a mantra in
            > > writer's circles. However, is telling instead of showing better
            in
            > > some cases. The prose is often more efficient with the word count
            and
            > > narrative moves faster. Greats such as Charles Dickens told, "It
            was
            > > the best of times. It was the worst of times." That's certainly
            > > telling. CS Lewis does a fair bit of telling in his Chronicles of
            > > Narnia. Show is usually prefered, but telling is sometimes better.
            > >
            > > So am I nuts? Are you gathering wood to burn the heretic at the
            stake?
            > >
            > > Douglas
            > >
            >
          • writing_queen_2007
            I can agree that one should know the conventions and grammar, but sometimes you need to trust your artistic instincts when the rules and stock advice needs to
            Message 5 of 17 , Aug 5, 2008
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              I can agree that one should know the conventions
              and grammar, but sometimes you need to trust your artistic instincts
              when the rules and stock advice needs to be broken.

              I completely agree

              --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "douglas.ryan68"
              <douglas.ryan68@...> wrote:
              >
              > Sorry for not letting the issue die, but this is something I've
              been
              > thinking of at work. There have been times when I've read how
              > characters "wrinkled his/her nose" when the author is trying to
              > "show" the character's reaction to what's happening or what the
              other
              > character says. First of, and a relatively minor point is that
              noses
              > don't wrinkle! I tried myself in the mirror and it doesn't work,
              the
              > bit between the eyes furrows and the nostrils flare, but the nose
              > itself is inflexible cartilage that won't wrinkle. So when showing,
              I
              > guess make sure that the "shown" reaction is physically something
              > actually happens and even can happen. However, a bigger point is
              that
              > sometimes the reader has a completely different idea what
              the "shown"
              > reaction (or even the series of events, etc) even means then the
              > author does. There have been times when I thought wrinkling the
              nose
              > was supposed to be a cute reaction, but the author took umbrage to
              > that opinion and informed me otherwise.
              >
              > Today I finished reading "A Confederacy of Dunces" and towards the
              > end there was a bit of telling that something along the lines "Mr.
              > Levy watched the anger and frustration play on his wife's face."
              That
              > might not be exactly how it went, but the point is that was telling
              > that I feel was more effective then the "showing" of what her lips,
              > eyes, wrinkling nose, etc did. I found my imagination was more
              > engaged by the telling then the author leading through
              the "showing."
              > That made it all the more satisfying to read. So in the case
              telling
              > worked quite well.
              >
              > If Vincent van Gogh had listened to an art teacher to the letter to
              > use such and such size brush to paint such and such scenes and
              never
              > use knives to paint, we would never of had is masterpieces. It's
              the
              > same with writing. I can agree that one should know the conventions
              > and grammar, but sometimes you need to trust your artistic
              instincts
              > when the rules and stock advice needs to be broken.
              >
              >
              > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "writing_queen_2007"
              > <writing_queen_2007@> wrote:
              > >
              > > Your absolutly right. I read a book, don't remember the tittle,
              but
              > > they explained that telling can be better then showwing, vice
              versa.
              > > You can alsways combine them as well.
              > >
              > > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "douglas.ryan68"
              > > <douglas.ryan68@> wrote:
              > > >
              > > > The advice, "Show don't tell" is oft repeated like a mantra in
              > > > writer's circles. However, is telling instead of showing better
              > in
              > > > some cases. The prose is often more efficient with the word
              count
              > and
              > > > narrative moves faster. Greats such as Charles Dickens
              told, "It
              > was
              > > > the best of times. It was the worst of times." That's certainly
              > > > telling. CS Lewis does a fair bit of telling in his Chronicles
              of
              > > > Narnia. Show is usually prefered, but telling is sometimes
              better.
              > > >
              > > > So am I nuts? Are you gathering wood to burn the heretic at the
              > stake?
              > > >
              > > > Douglas
              > > >
              > >
              >
            • wings081
              Hi Douglas I wonder how many members, upon reading your last post,sat in front of a mirror to check if they were able to twitch their nose. Elizabeth
              Message 6 of 17 , Aug 6, 2008
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                Hi Douglas
                I wonder how many members, upon reading your last post,sat in front
                of a mirror to check if they were able to 'twitch' their nose.

                Elizabeth Montgomery of the television series "Bewitched" was able to
                twitch her nose since she was a young girl and when she started doing
                it at the start of the series the producers wrote it into the script
                for future episodes.

                So, it is possible my friend and if you are unsuccessful, you should
                perhaps, along with the rest of us, consult a rhinologist, or to give
                him his proper title: an otolaryngologist.

                I do tend to agree with you that rules are there to be broken, when
                it is demanded to create authenticity, but some grammatical errors
                (of which I also am guilty)get right up my nose and cause it
                to 'wrinkle'.

                Douglas, I'm going to take a piece out of your post and critcise
                it,hoping you won't take offence, because none is intended.

                Regarding Vincent van Gogh you wrote:
                "...we would never of had his masterpieces" (never of)
                This appears to be an American grammatical error which is seen often
                on this board and should read: "Never have had" or "never have"

                Another common error which is now acceptable in th US is the
                word 'Gotten'.
                I was once taken to task by my English teacher at junior school for
                having written "I have got" as he averred 'have' and 'got' to be
                similar words and so in effect I was saying "I have have"

                Well that's my little gripe for this morning and I'm off to make a cup
                of tea and see if there are any macaroons left.

                I believe I know you well enough by now Douglas to realise you will
                not ask me to choose my weapons before the sun rises tomorrow.

                As always

                Wings


                --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "douglas.ryan68"
                <douglas.ryan68@...> wrote:
                >
                > Sorry for not letting the issue die, but this is something I've
                been
                > thinking of at work. There have been times when I've read how
                > characters "wrinkled his/her nose" when the author is trying to
                > "show" the character's reaction to what's happening or what the
                other
                > character says. First of, and a relatively minor point is that
                noses
                > don't wrinkle! I tried myself in the mirror and it doesn't work,
                the
                > bit between the eyes furrows and the nostrils flare, but the nose
                > itself is inflexible cartilage that won't wrinkle. So when showing,
                I
                > guess make sure that the "shown" reaction is physically something
                > actually happens and even can happen. However, a bigger point is
                that
                > sometimes the reader has a completely different idea what
                the "shown"
                > reaction (or even the series of events, etc) even means then the
                > author does. There have been times when I thought wrinkling the
                nose
                > was supposed to be a cute reaction, but the author took umbrage to
                > that opinion and informed me otherwise.
                >
                > Today I finished reading "A Confederacy of Dunces" and towards the
                > end there was a bit of telling that something along the lines "Mr.
                > Levy watched the anger and frustration play on his wife's face."
                That
                > might not be exactly how it went, but the point is that was telling
                > that I feel was more effective then the "showing" of what her lips,
                > eyes, wrinkling nose, etc did. I found my imagination was more
                > engaged by the telling then the author leading through
                the "showing."
                > That made it all the more satisfying to read. So in the case
                telling
                > worked quite well.
                >
                > If Vincent van Gogh had listened to an art teacher to the letter to
                > use such and such size brush to paint such and such scenes and
                never
                > use knives to paint, we would never of had is masterpieces. It's
                the
                > same with writing. I can agree that one should know the conventions
                > and grammar, but sometimes you need to trust your artistic
                instincts
                > when the rules and stock advice needs to be broken.
                >
                >
                > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "writing_queen_2007"
                > <writing_queen_2007@> wrote:
                > >
                > > Your absolutly right. I read a book, don't remember the tittle,
                but
                > > they explained that telling can be better then showwing, vice
                versa.
                > > You can alsways combine them as well.
                > >
                > > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "douglas.ryan68"
                > > <douglas.ryan68@> wrote:
                > > >
                > > > The advice, "Show don't tell" is oft repeated like a mantra in
                > > > writer's circles. However, is telling instead of showing better
                > in
                > > > some cases. The prose is often more efficient with the word
                count
                > and
                > > > narrative moves faster. Greats such as Charles Dickens
                told, "It
                > was
                > > > the best of times. It was the worst of times." That's certainly
                > > > telling. CS Lewis does a fair bit of telling in his Chronicles
                of
                > > > Narnia. Show is usually prefered, but telling is sometimes
                better.
                > > >
                > > > So am I nuts? Are you gathering wood to burn the heretic at the
                > stake?
                > > >
                > > > Douglas
                > > >
                > >
                >
              • goddessinbluejeans
                Dear Douglas and Wings and All Those Whom Struggle With Grammar: Astute observations Douglas! Of course that is why writers, poets included, hire editors and
                Message 7 of 17 , Aug 6, 2008
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                  Dear Douglas and Wings and All Those Whom Struggle With Grammar:
                  Astute observations Douglas! Of course that is why writers, poets
                  included, hire editors and the like ilk!
                  We live in North America, free from the Victorian restraints of
                  absolutes and correct grammatical etiquette and/or usage. Americans
                  and North Americans, Canadians included. do not feel the extreme
                  angst like the Brits do in regards to the annoying grammatical rule
                  breaking. The Britians, known as the English, are the famed heart of
                  the Lion and Unicorn hierarchial establishment are so keen on
                  pursuing grammar as The Most Important Feature Of English Usage.
                  In some ways, I agree; grammar as a psuedo-science is very important.
                  Douglas, when we make our usual grammatical errors can you not feel
                  those aberrant and bristled hairs standing up on the mustache of
                  Wings' elogated British stiff upper lip? His strong British chin
                  precipitously jutting over his computer keyboard as he gasps in
                  horror? Me too!
                  Similiar to the much more than annoying scrapping on the blackboard,
                  the proverbial school marm, Wings, is perhaps much inclined to survey
                  each and every word of ours and its extraordinary consequential
                  errors of the worst kind. An incredibly daunting task, but one I am
                  sure Wings can perform with extraordinary aptitude. "Oh no, not
                  another dangling participle!
                  Yes, words matter, but is there not the freedom of speech to make the
                  occasional error in grammar especially in Great Britian? Wouldst the
                  Queen herself be standing over the dear Wings surveying all the world
                  and all that is in it? What is with this fixation? Is there no sense
                  of freedom or at least, artistic license to err on the side of
                  expression, or the creative need to express oneself indelibly without
                  grammar rules pounding on the right side of the creative brain?
                  I beleive I received my crackerjack box of nonconventional wisdom
                  from the Americans. Yes, I admire their writers and history. Their
                  freedoms and their almond joy chocolate bars.Perhaps it is jealousy
                  of my British cousins, but I do prefer the freedom of being able to
                  express first, edit later. Are feelings edited out of the context of
                  correct grammatical equation in English literary works? Do these
                  stiff rules create a collective binding of corsets and minds?
                  Americans did not throw their tea into the Boston harbour for no good
                  reason. Grammar rules were driving them insane!
                  Yes, as much as the Brits like to correct Americans poor grammatical
                  sense of the world, they are also more likely to sit back in their
                  winged-back chairs in their stuffy country clubs secretly chuckling
                  under their breath about their supremacy of the English as a coupe
                  d'etate and relish and langish in their domination of this language
                  field. Scholars checkmate!
                  And yes, we, as North Americans are more likely to dismiss the
                  restrictive constraints of the grammatical chastity belt, as far as
                  writing is concerned, social issues aside, semantics another issue
                  altogether!
                  Canada, once the minion of redcoats and covered ankles puritanical
                  ethics, often could hold its own in regards to the Oxford's English
                  grammar rules. Canadians, an odd admixture of peasant and royalty
                  would be best described as "Victorian wannabes". No matter how
                  sublimated we became by the glove to the face in the grammar duel, we
                  were nevertheless polite when we accepted the writerly challenge.
                  How absolutely necessary the correct grammatical format, I believe
                  this is true today as well.
                  Nose wrinkling becoming an art form, Canadians are not immune to
                  wrinkle said nose in disguist at the excessive rules constricting
                  their free flow of words.
                  It is true, Canadians rebelled, forever to be remembered as the
                  nation that prefixes all sentences with "Eh?". This slobberly edifice
                  of a non-word confounds and bemoans my sense of propriety to correct
                  English usage. For this reason I am trying to move back to jolly old
                  England. Move over Wings!
                  Those much dreaded "faux pas" incidents of dear Wings conflagarative
                  premptive essay bespeaks of the need for grammar as sanity versus
                  insanity. Without the building blocks of the English language dear
                  Wings believes we will all fall down, grammatically speaking. With
                  clauses here and there and no one to pick up after the horribilus
                  mess.
                  Rule Britianica or should it be Rules Britianica? Douglas, I did
                  check my nose, it does wrinkle! It looks like the question mark
                  man... I should send a pic to confirm this fact or Wings will not
                  accept this allegory!
                  This reminds me of my dear, sweet, yet cruel grammar teacher with her
                  nosey twitch. Or is this burnt cranial image really Sir Wings waiting
                  in the wings to smack my wrists with the ruler of grammatical
                  correctness? Excusez the pun, dear wings! Al. in beau geste!
                  Although, I believe I had missed many Grade 8 grammar classes due to
                  illness of a faking sort, I remember a boy named Scott who could whip
                  all our collective (should I be correct here or go for the Yankee
                  gusto?)butt of the studentiary and take the first prize for
                  being "grammatically correct" student sum gratia. Where is Scott now
                  when I need him? He is probably a professional banker with oddles of
                  cash. Paying attention to grammar rules obviously pays great
                  dividends. Why did I not learn from Soott or at least learn by proxy
                  by dating him once or twice?
                  Please point out my grammatical errors and my poor spelling and
                  punctionation, I kind of fancy the tickle to the wrist! Ouchez! GIBJ--
                  - In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "douglas.ryan68"
                  <douglas.ryan68@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > Sorry for not letting the issue die, but this is something I've
                  been
                  > thinking of at work. There have been times when I've read how
                  > characters "wrinkled his/her nose" when the author is trying to
                  > "show" the character's reaction to what's happening or what the
                  other
                  > character says. First of, and a relatively minor point is that
                  noses
                  > don't wrinkle! I tried myself in the mirror and it doesn't work,
                  the
                  > bit between the eyes furrows and the nostrils flare, but the nose
                  > itself is inflexible cartilage that won't wrinkle. So when showing,
                  I
                  > guess make sure that the "shown" reaction is physically something
                  > actually happens and even can happen. However, a bigger point is
                  that
                  > sometimes the reader has a completely different idea what
                  the "shown"
                  > reaction (or even the series of events, etc) even means then the
                  > author does. There have been times when I thought wrinkling the
                  nose
                  > was supposed to be a cute reaction, but the author took umbrage to
                  > that opinion and informed me otherwise.
                  >
                  > Today I finished reading "A Confederacy of Dunces" and towards the
                  > end there was a bit of telling that something along the lines "Mr.
                  > Levy watched the anger and frustration play on his wife's face."
                  That
                  > might not be exactly how it went, but the point is that was telling
                  > that I feel was more effective then the "showing" of what her lips,
                  > eyes, wrinkling nose, etc did. I found my imagination was more
                  > engaged by the telling then the author leading through
                  the "showing."
                  > That made it all the more satisfying to read. So in the case
                  telling
                  > worked quite well.
                  >
                  > If Vincent van Gogh had listened to an art teacher to the letter to
                  > use such and such size brush to paint such and such scenes and
                  never
                  > use knives to paint, we would never of had is masterpieces. It's
                  the
                  > same with writing. I can agree that one should know the conventions
                  > and grammar, but sometimes you need to trust your artistic
                  instincts
                  > when the rules and stock advice needs to be broken.
                  >
                  >
                  > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "writing_queen_2007"
                  > <writing_queen_2007@> wrote:
                  > >
                  > > Your absolutly right. I read a book, don't remember the tittle,
                  but
                  > > they explained that telling can be better then showwing, vice
                  versa.
                  > > You can alsways combine them as well.
                  > >
                  > > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "douglas.ryan68"
                  > > <douglas.ryan68@> wrote:
                  > > >
                  > > > The advice, "Show don't tell" is oft repeated like a mantra in
                  > > > writer's circles. However, is telling instead of showing better
                  > in
                  > > > some cases. The prose is often more efficient with the word
                  count
                  > and
                  > > > narrative moves faster. Greats such as Charles Dickens
                  told, "It
                  > was
                  > > > the best of times. It was the worst of times." That's certainly
                  > > > telling. CS Lewis does a fair bit of telling in his Chronicles
                  of
                  > > > Narnia. Show is usually prefered, but telling is sometimes
                  better.
                  > > >
                  > > > So am I nuts? Are you gathering wood to burn the heretic at the
                  > stake?
                  > > >
                  > > > Douglas
                  > > >
                  > >
                  >
                • Susan Donahue
                  Apparently, some WHO struggle with grammar are fighting a losing battle. ... of ... important. ... blackboard, ... survey ... the ... the ... world ... sense
                  Message 8 of 17 , Aug 6, 2008
                  • 0 Attachment
                    Apparently, some WHO struggle with grammar are fighting a losing
                    battle.



                    --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "goddessinbluejeans"
                    <goddessinbluejeans@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > Dear Douglas and Wings and All Those Whom Struggle With Grammar:
                    > Astute observations Douglas! Of course that is why writers, poets
                    > included, hire editors and the like ilk!
                    > We live in North America, free from the Victorian restraints of
                    > absolutes and correct grammatical etiquette and/or usage. Americans
                    > and North Americans, Canadians included. do not feel the extreme
                    > angst like the Brits do in regards to the annoying grammatical rule
                    > breaking. The Britians, known as the English, are the famed heart
                    of
                    > the Lion and Unicorn hierarchial establishment are so keen on
                    > pursuing grammar as The Most Important Feature Of English Usage.
                    > In some ways, I agree; grammar as a psuedo-science is very
                    important.
                    > Douglas, when we make our usual grammatical errors can you not feel
                    > those aberrant and bristled hairs standing up on the mustache of
                    > Wings' elogated British stiff upper lip? His strong British chin
                    > precipitously jutting over his computer keyboard as he gasps in
                    > horror? Me too!
                    > Similiar to the much more than annoying scrapping on the
                    blackboard,
                    > the proverbial school marm, Wings, is perhaps much inclined to
                    survey
                    > each and every word of ours and its extraordinary consequential
                    > errors of the worst kind. An incredibly daunting task, but one I am
                    > sure Wings can perform with extraordinary aptitude. "Oh no, not
                    > another dangling participle!
                    > Yes, words matter, but is there not the freedom of speech to make
                    the
                    > occasional error in grammar especially in Great Britian? Wouldst
                    the
                    > Queen herself be standing over the dear Wings surveying all the
                    world
                    > and all that is in it? What is with this fixation? Is there no
                    sense
                    > of freedom or at least, artistic license to err on the side of
                    > expression, or the creative need to express oneself indelibly
                    without
                    > grammar rules pounding on the right side of the creative brain?
                    > I beleive I received my crackerjack box of nonconventional wisdom
                    > from the Americans. Yes, I admire their writers and history. Their
                    > freedoms and their almond joy chocolate bars.Perhaps it is jealousy
                    > of my British cousins, but I do prefer the freedom of being able to
                    > express first, edit later. Are feelings edited out of the context
                    of
                    > correct grammatical equation in English literary works? Do these
                    > stiff rules create a collective binding of corsets and minds?
                    > Americans did not throw their tea into the Boston harbour for no
                    good
                    > reason. Grammar rules were driving them insane!
                    > Yes, as much as the Brits like to correct Americans poor
                    grammatical
                    > sense of the world, they are also more likely to sit back in their
                    > winged-back chairs in their stuffy country clubs secretly chuckling
                    > under their breath about their supremacy of the English as a coupe
                    > d'etate and relish and langish in their domination of this language
                    > field. Scholars checkmate!
                    > And yes, we, as North Americans are more likely to dismiss the
                    > restrictive constraints of the grammatical chastity belt, as far as
                    > writing is concerned, social issues aside, semantics another issue
                    > altogether!
                    > Canada, once the minion of redcoats and covered ankles puritanical
                    > ethics, often could hold its own in regards to the Oxford's English
                    > grammar rules. Canadians, an odd admixture of peasant and royalty
                    > would be best described as "Victorian wannabes". No matter how
                    > sublimated we became by the glove to the face in the grammar duel,
                    we
                    > were nevertheless polite when we accepted the writerly challenge.
                    > How absolutely necessary the correct grammatical format, I believe
                    > this is true today as well.
                    > Nose wrinkling becoming an art form, Canadians are not immune to
                    > wrinkle said nose in disguist at the excessive rules constricting
                    > their free flow of words.
                    > It is true, Canadians rebelled, forever to be remembered as the
                    > nation that prefixes all sentences with "Eh?". This slobberly
                    edifice
                    > of a non-word confounds and bemoans my sense of propriety to
                    correct
                    > English usage. For this reason I am trying to move back to jolly
                    old
                    > England. Move over Wings!
                    > Those much dreaded "faux pas" incidents of dear Wings
                    conflagarative
                    > premptive essay bespeaks of the need for grammar as sanity versus
                    > insanity. Without the building blocks of the English language dear
                    > Wings believes we will all fall down, grammatically speaking. With
                    > clauses here and there and no one to pick up after the horribilus
                    > mess.
                    > Rule Britianica or should it be Rules Britianica? Douglas, I did
                    > check my nose, it does wrinkle! It looks like the question mark
                    > man... I should send a pic to confirm this fact or Wings will not
                    > accept this allegory!
                    > This reminds me of my dear, sweet, yet cruel grammar teacher with
                    her
                    > nosey twitch. Or is this burnt cranial image really Sir Wings
                    waiting
                    > in the wings to smack my wrists with the ruler of grammatical
                    > correctness? Excusez the pun, dear wings! Al. in beau geste!
                    > Although, I believe I had missed many Grade 8 grammar classes due
                    to
                    > illness of a faking sort, I remember a boy named Scott who could
                    whip
                    > all our collective (should I be correct here or go for the Yankee
                    > gusto?)butt of the studentiary and take the first prize for
                    > being "grammatically correct" student sum gratia. Where is Scott
                    now
                    > when I need him? He is probably a professional banker with oddles
                    of
                    > cash. Paying attention to grammar rules obviously pays great
                    > dividends. Why did I not learn from Soott or at least learn by
                    proxy
                    > by dating him once or twice?
                    > Please point out my grammatical errors and my poor spelling and
                    > punctionation, I kind of fancy the tickle to the wrist! Ouchez!
                    GIBJ--
                    > - In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "douglas.ryan68"
                    > <douglas.ryan68@> wrote:
                    > >
                    > > Sorry for not letting the issue die, but this is something I've
                    > been
                    > > thinking of at work. There have been times when I've read how
                    > > characters "wrinkled his/her nose" when the author is trying to
                    > > "show" the character's reaction to what's happening or what the
                    > other
                    > > character says. First of, and a relatively minor point is that
                    > noses
                    > > don't wrinkle! I tried myself in the mirror and it doesn't work,
                    > the
                    > > bit between the eyes furrows and the nostrils flare, but the nose
                    > > itself is inflexible cartilage that won't wrinkle. So when
                    showing,
                    > I
                    > > guess make sure that the "shown" reaction is physically something
                    > > actually happens and even can happen. However, a bigger point is
                    > that
                    > > sometimes the reader has a completely different idea what
                    > the "shown"
                    > > reaction (or even the series of events, etc) even means then the
                    > > author does. There have been times when I thought wrinkling the
                    > nose
                    > > was supposed to be a cute reaction, but the author took umbrage
                    to
                    > > that opinion and informed me otherwise.
                    > >
                    > > Today I finished reading "A Confederacy of Dunces" and towards
                    the
                    > > end there was a bit of telling that something along the
                    lines "Mr.
                    > > Levy watched the anger and frustration play on his wife's face."
                    > That
                    > > might not be exactly how it went, but the point is that was
                    telling
                    > > that I feel was more effective then the "showing" of what her
                    lips,
                    > > eyes, wrinkling nose, etc did. I found my imagination was more
                    > > engaged by the telling then the author leading through
                    > the "showing."
                    > > That made it all the more satisfying to read. So in the case
                    > telling
                    > > worked quite well.
                    > >
                    > > If Vincent van Gogh had listened to an art teacher to the letter
                    to
                    > > use such and such size brush to paint such and such scenes and
                    > never
                    > > use knives to paint, we would never of had is masterpieces. It's
                    > the
                    > > same with writing. I can agree that one should know the
                    conventions
                    > > and grammar, but sometimes you need to trust your artistic
                    > instincts
                    > > when the rules and stock advice needs to be broken.
                    > >
                    > >
                    > > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "writing_queen_2007"
                    > > <writing_queen_2007@> wrote:
                    > > >
                    > > > Your absolutly right. I read a book, don't remember the tittle,
                    > but
                    > > > they explained that telling can be better then showwing, vice
                    > versa.
                    > > > You can alsways combine them as well.
                    > > >
                    > > > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "douglas.ryan68"
                    > > > <douglas.ryan68@> wrote:
                    > > > >
                    > > > > The advice, "Show don't tell" is oft repeated like a mantra
                    in
                    > > > > writer's circles. However, is telling instead of showing
                    better
                    > > in
                    > > > > some cases. The prose is often more efficient with the word
                    > count
                    > > and
                    > > > > narrative moves faster. Greats such as Charles Dickens
                    > told, "It
                    > > was
                    > > > > the best of times. It was the worst of times." That's
                    certainly
                    > > > > telling. CS Lewis does a fair bit of telling in his
                    Chronicles
                    > of
                    > > > > Narnia. Show is usually prefered, but telling is sometimes
                    > better.
                    > > > >
                    > > > > So am I nuts? Are you gathering wood to burn the heretic at
                    the
                    > > stake?
                    > > > >
                    > > > > Douglas
                    > > > >
                    > > >
                    > >
                    >
                  • goddessinbluejeans
                    Dear Susan: Glad you caught that one! GIBJ--- In ... Americans ... rule ... feel ... am ... Their ... jealousy ... to ... their ... chuckling ... coupe ...
                    Message 9 of 17 , Aug 6, 2008
                    • 0 Attachment
                      Dear Susan: Glad you caught that one! GIBJ--- In
                      ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "Susan Donahue" <suzianne411@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > Apparently, some WHO struggle with grammar are fighting a losing
                      > battle.
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "goddessinbluejeans"
                      > <goddessinbluejeans@> wrote:
                      > >
                      > > Dear Douglas and Wings and All Those Whom Struggle With Grammar:
                      > > Astute observations Douglas! Of course that is why writers, poets
                      > > included, hire editors and the like ilk!
                      > > We live in North America, free from the Victorian restraints of
                      > > absolutes and correct grammatical etiquette and/or usage.
                      Americans
                      > > and North Americans, Canadians included. do not feel the extreme
                      > > angst like the Brits do in regards to the annoying grammatical
                      rule
                      > > breaking. The Britians, known as the English, are the famed heart
                      > of
                      > > the Lion and Unicorn hierarchial establishment are so keen on
                      > > pursuing grammar as The Most Important Feature Of English Usage.
                      > > In some ways, I agree; grammar as a psuedo-science is very
                      > important.
                      > > Douglas, when we make our usual grammatical errors can you not
                      feel
                      > > those aberrant and bristled hairs standing up on the mustache of
                      > > Wings' elogated British stiff upper lip? His strong British chin
                      > > precipitously jutting over his computer keyboard as he gasps in
                      > > horror? Me too!
                      > > Similiar to the much more than annoying scrapping on the
                      > blackboard,
                      > > the proverbial school marm, Wings, is perhaps much inclined to
                      > survey
                      > > each and every word of ours and its extraordinary consequential
                      > > errors of the worst kind. An incredibly daunting task, but one I
                      am
                      > > sure Wings can perform with extraordinary aptitude. "Oh no, not
                      > > another dangling participle!
                      > > Yes, words matter, but is there not the freedom of speech to make
                      > the
                      > > occasional error in grammar especially in Great Britian? Wouldst
                      > the
                      > > Queen herself be standing over the dear Wings surveying all the
                      > world
                      > > and all that is in it? What is with this fixation? Is there no
                      > sense
                      > > of freedom or at least, artistic license to err on the side of
                      > > expression, or the creative need to express oneself indelibly
                      > without
                      > > grammar rules pounding on the right side of the creative brain?
                      > > I beleive I received my crackerjack box of nonconventional wisdom
                      > > from the Americans. Yes, I admire their writers and history.
                      Their
                      > > freedoms and their almond joy chocolate bars.Perhaps it is
                      jealousy
                      > > of my British cousins, but I do prefer the freedom of being able
                      to
                      > > express first, edit later. Are feelings edited out of the context
                      > of
                      > > correct grammatical equation in English literary works? Do these
                      > > stiff rules create a collective binding of corsets and minds?
                      > > Americans did not throw their tea into the Boston harbour for no
                      > good
                      > > reason. Grammar rules were driving them insane!
                      > > Yes, as much as the Brits like to correct Americans poor
                      > grammatical
                      > > sense of the world, they are also more likely to sit back in
                      their
                      > > winged-back chairs in their stuffy country clubs secretly
                      chuckling
                      > > under their breath about their supremacy of the English as a
                      coupe
                      > > d'etate and relish and langish in their domination of this
                      language
                      > > field. Scholars checkmate!
                      > > And yes, we, as North Americans are more likely to dismiss the
                      > > restrictive constraints of the grammatical chastity belt, as far
                      as
                      > > writing is concerned, social issues aside, semantics another
                      issue
                      > > altogether!
                      > > Canada, once the minion of redcoats and covered ankles
                      puritanical
                      > > ethics, often could hold its own in regards to the Oxford's
                      English
                      > > grammar rules. Canadians, an odd admixture of peasant and royalty
                      > > would be best described as "Victorian wannabes". No matter how
                      > > sublimated we became by the glove to the face in the grammar
                      duel,
                      > we
                      > > were nevertheless polite when we accepted the writerly
                      challenge.
                      > > How absolutely necessary the correct grammatical format, I
                      believe
                      > > this is true today as well.
                      > > Nose wrinkling becoming an art form, Canadians are not immune to
                      > > wrinkle said nose in disguist at the excessive rules constricting
                      > > their free flow of words.
                      > > It is true, Canadians rebelled, forever to be remembered as the
                      > > nation that prefixes all sentences with "Eh?". This slobberly
                      > edifice
                      > > of a non-word confounds and bemoans my sense of propriety to
                      > correct
                      > > English usage. For this reason I am trying to move back to jolly
                      > old
                      > > England. Move over Wings!
                      > > Those much dreaded "faux pas" incidents of dear Wings
                      > conflagarative
                      > > premptive essay bespeaks of the need for grammar as sanity versus
                      > > insanity. Without the building blocks of the English language
                      dear
                      > > Wings believes we will all fall down, grammatically speaking.
                      With
                      > > clauses here and there and no one to pick up after the horribilus
                      > > mess.
                      > > Rule Britianica or should it be Rules Britianica? Douglas, I did
                      > > check my nose, it does wrinkle! It looks like the question mark
                      > > man... I should send a pic to confirm this fact or Wings will not
                      > > accept this allegory!
                      > > This reminds me of my dear, sweet, yet cruel grammar teacher with
                      > her
                      > > nosey twitch. Or is this burnt cranial image really Sir Wings
                      > waiting
                      > > in the wings to smack my wrists with the ruler of grammatical
                      > > correctness? Excusez the pun, dear wings! Al. in beau geste!
                      > > Although, I believe I had missed many Grade 8 grammar classes due
                      > to
                      > > illness of a faking sort, I remember a boy named Scott who could
                      > whip
                      > > all our collective (should I be correct here or go for the Yankee
                      > > gusto?)butt of the studentiary and take the first prize for
                      > > being "grammatically correct" student sum gratia. Where is Scott
                      > now
                      > > when I need him? He is probably a professional banker with oddles
                      > of
                      > > cash. Paying attention to grammar rules obviously pays great
                      > > dividends. Why did I not learn from Soott or at least learn by
                      > proxy
                      > > by dating him once or twice?
                      > > Please point out my grammatical errors and my poor spelling and
                      > > punctionation, I kind of fancy the tickle to the wrist! Ouchez!
                      > GIBJ--
                      > > - In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "douglas.ryan68"
                      > > <douglas.ryan68@> wrote:
                      > > >
                      > > > Sorry for not letting the issue die, but this is something I've
                      > > been
                      > > > thinking of at work. There have been times when I've read how
                      > > > characters "wrinkled his/her nose" when the author is trying to
                      > > > "show" the character's reaction to what's happening or what the
                      > > other
                      > > > character says. First of, and a relatively minor point is that
                      > > noses
                      > > > don't wrinkle! I tried myself in the mirror and it doesn't
                      work,
                      > > the
                      > > > bit between the eyes furrows and the nostrils flare, but the
                      nose
                      > > > itself is inflexible cartilage that won't wrinkle. So when
                      > showing,
                      > > I
                      > > > guess make sure that the "shown" reaction is physically
                      something
                      > > > actually happens and even can happen. However, a bigger point
                      is
                      > > that
                      > > > sometimes the reader has a completely different idea what
                      > > the "shown"
                      > > > reaction (or even the series of events, etc) even means then
                      the
                      > > > author does. There have been times when I thought wrinkling the
                      > > nose
                      > > > was supposed to be a cute reaction, but the author took umbrage
                      > to
                      > > > that opinion and informed me otherwise.
                      > > >
                      > > > Today I finished reading "A Confederacy of Dunces" and towards
                      > the
                      > > > end there was a bit of telling that something along the
                      > lines "Mr.
                      > > > Levy watched the anger and frustration play on his wife's
                      face."
                      > > That
                      > > > might not be exactly how it went, but the point is that was
                      > telling
                      > > > that I feel was more effective then the "showing" of what her
                      > lips,
                      > > > eyes, wrinkling nose, etc did. I found my imagination was more
                      > > > engaged by the telling then the author leading through
                      > > the "showing."
                      > > > That made it all the more satisfying to read. So in the case
                      > > telling
                      > > > worked quite well.
                      > > >
                      > > > If Vincent van Gogh had listened to an art teacher to the
                      letter
                      > to
                      > > > use such and such size brush to paint such and such scenes and
                      > > never
                      > > > use knives to paint, we would never of had is masterpieces.
                      It's
                      > > the
                      > > > same with writing. I can agree that one should know the
                      > conventions
                      > > > and grammar, but sometimes you need to trust your artistic
                      > > instincts
                      > > > when the rules and stock advice needs to be broken.
                      > > >
                      > > >
                      > > > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "writing_queen_2007"
                      > > > <writing_queen_2007@> wrote:
                      > > > >
                      > > > > Your absolutly right. I read a book, don't remember the
                      tittle,
                      > > but
                      > > > > they explained that telling can be better then showwing, vice
                      > > versa.
                      > > > > You can alsways combine them as well.
                      > > > >
                      > > > > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "douglas.ryan68"
                      > > > > <douglas.ryan68@> wrote:
                      > > > > >
                      > > > > > The advice, "Show don't tell" is oft repeated like a mantra
                      > in
                      > > > > > writer's circles. However, is telling instead of showing
                      > better
                      > > > in
                      > > > > > some cases. The prose is often more efficient with the word
                      > > count
                      > > > and
                      > > > > > narrative moves faster. Greats such as Charles Dickens
                      > > told, "It
                      > > > was
                      > > > > > the best of times. It was the worst of times." That's
                      > certainly
                      > > > > > telling. CS Lewis does a fair bit of telling in his
                      > Chronicles
                      > > of
                      > > > > > Narnia. Show is usually prefered, but telling is sometimes
                      > > better.
                      > > > > >
                      > > > > > So am I nuts? Are you gathering wood to burn the heretic at
                      > the
                      > > > stake?
                      > > > > >
                      > > > > > Douglas
                      > > > > >
                      > > > >
                      > > >
                      > >
                      >
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