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This Week on WA
Category: Site News

I arrived back in Japan late last night and although I've had a good night's sleep apologies for anything I've missed here. It is about 36 degrees and high humidity too so all round the brain is a little addled.

Firstly Vesna has posted the blog about writing style and how it varies in time and space depending on current fashion in society. Personally I could do with a few more adjectives coming back into fashion - it would save me going through and cutting them from my first drafts...

Laura is yet to put up any muses - hopefully today!

Crilly has posted the minutes from Sunday's formal chat. Updates on the anthology and next magazine are there. And suggestions for August writing challenges are on there too, but presumably any more suggestions are welcome. I had an email from the city, town and village writing people saying they were going to announce a new competition soon entitled "Off the Beaten Track" so you might want to start thinking about that.

Jill and I are both on the bragging stool. Jill has made the semi finals of the I Must Be Off travel writing competition and I've made the long list of this quarter's Flash 500.

The next informal chat will be Sunday 9th August for those who can make it.  

I'm off to unpack the suitcases, try and wake the husband, and revive the depressed flower pots on the balcony. Then editing the anthology stories.

If I've missed anything, I apologise. I'll try and catch up with things on the site, but if anyone wants me to look at a story - email me!

Have a good writing week, or good holiday if it is that time of year for you!  

Grammar Wars – or, Socio-Political Impact on Sentence Structure
Category: Writing

Why does current ‘literary’ style dictate the slaughtering of adjectives, the press-ganging of nouns into slavery as verbs, and the Procrustean truncation of sentences to a maximum of two lines? Why are we meant to eschew lavish application of flourishes and go straight for the ‘punchy’ sentence, until the surface of the text is stretched out to a bronzed, quivering patina?

Let me suggest: it has more to do with current Western politics than with any intrinsic literary merit.

We like to think that the perfect society is harmoniously balanced in an almost organic unison of controlled precision which allows within its fertile parameters a flowering of imagination and individuality of miraculous scope. Well… by ‘we’ I mean some sort of nebulous Capitalist idealism. Most importantly, this idealism has to at least seem ‘genuine’. It must appear to be accessible to the voting masses. It must present an honest, hardworking (yet pulled-up-by-the-bootstraps-till-glamorous) front – dependable, solid, and above all supposedly easy to understand.

It’s by no means the same everywhere. In Eastern Bloc countries the ability to keep hold of the reins of a two-page sentence without misplacing a subject or a verb can be considered the height of good breeding and education. The message of the sentence itself is of little importance in comparison. (Translations into English tend to fare badly.) In Japanese: allusion, implication and tweezer-precise application of vocabulary tower over sentence structure and grammar. In the Middle East: rhythm, harmony of sound, and an exuberant demonstration of textual erudition carry the day.

These are of course gross over-simplifications.

But next time you agonise over the last adverb or that sub-clause you simply can’t bear to annihilate, consider. What are you really saying with your sentence structure?

 

This Week on WA
Category: Site News
Tags: this week writers abroad monday muses blog

Hot, Hot, Hot! The Italians are saying the hottest July for 70 years! My brain is a puddle... so apologies in advance if this is more garbled than usual...

Crilly has provided us with some great motivation to get writing (whatever the weather) in the Monday Muses. As well as some written ideas, there are some great images. Love the B&W one of the couple...

Nicola has penned the Blog - on the reasons for having a pen name. Do you use a pen name and how did you choose it?

Dianne and Sally have both posted their submissions for Kaleidoscope in the July Writing Challenge. Have you done yours yet?? No pressure, honest. 

And have you voted on your favourite 'eye' for the cover of the Anthology yet? If not pop over, Vesna's been working hard on producing a few choices.

I don't think there are any new Brags this week, but Angela has provided a link to the NFFD Anthology in which a few members feature.

We have a formal Chat this coming Sunday. An agenda will follow and Crilly is in the chair. I send my apologies. Cleaning duty calls...

Have a good writing week! 

 

 

 

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Monday, July 27, 2015
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Grammar Wars – or, Socio-Political Impact on Sentence Structure
Posted by Vesna

Why does current ‘literary’ style dictate the slaughtering of adjectives, the press-ganging of nouns into slavery as verbs, and the Procrustean truncation of sentences to...Read More

A Rose by any other Name...
Posted by Nicola

Just how important is a name? I’ve been thinking about pen names a lot lately, and whether I need another one, so I thought I’d...Read More

Passive Protagonist Syndrome
Posted by Jill Brown

Passive Protagonist Syndrome

I’ve just come across PPS. Worse still, I’ve got it! Or at least some of the characters in my stories do....Read More

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