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  1. #1
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    Default paragraphs

    Do speeches, no matter how short they are, always get their own paragraphs?
    What if doing so will divide related sentences?
    How about actions in between speeches?

    Can anybody fix this?:

    "What did you say?" said Johnny.
    I slipped, and I knew I couldn't defend myself, so I kept quiet.
    He repeated the question and looked at me with stern eyes. "Don't hide things from me, Julie." He crossed his arms.
    I was nervous. "I-I'm not hiding anything from you, Johnny." My voice was barely audible.

    Please help me, anyone.
    Last edited by whatever_love_means; 15-Mar-2007 at 00:42.

  2. #2
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: transitions and paragraphs

    1 Try just deleting them. You can get rid of sequncing:
    I did a, then I did b.
    hadving done a, I did b.
    Semi-colons can be used in place of commas and conjunctions.

    With the pargraph, there's nothing uch in there for me to visualise. OK, we have man/dog/tail wag/biscuit/wag/TV, but there are no clues in there as to why I should want to follow this and see what's going to happen with them. I know he's a man, but nothing more. I don't mean go crazy on the description, but I would add something there to individualise them.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: transitions and paragraphs

    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    1 Try just deleting them. You can get rid of sequncing:
    I did a, then I did b.
    hadving done a, I did b.
    Okay, I'll do that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    With the pargraph, there's nothing uch in there for me to visualise.
    True. I'm reading a bit of Hemingway, and I think I'm trying to copy him.

    Thank you again, Tdol.

  4. #4
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: transitions and paragraphs

    Those writers like Hemingway, Orwell, etc, who write such plain prose are in their way very artful- the way Hemingway can repeat simple things that could so easily be dull is one of literature's mysteries to me.

    Have you read this: "Eh Joe: A Piece For Television" - By Samuel Beckett. Complete text online - BradColbourne.com ? Beckett goes beyond the simple sentence, down to the phrase, and says so much more by what he leaves out. He can turn and interjection and a name into something devastatingly powerful and haunting.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: transitions and paragraphs

    Formidable site, Tdol. And I am strangely attracted to its contents.
    Is that what people call screenplay? I'm going to study the whole thing. Thank you again.

  6. #6
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: transitions and paragraphs

    It's a truly fantastic piece; he makes tiny ohrases jump out at you. It's haunting and universal, yet also deeply personal. And about five pages long. It is one of Beckett's screenplays, though most of his work was written for the theatre.

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