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    #1

    Ben went into a restaurant to have a quiet dinner

    Would you please correct the mistakes in my sentences?

    Ben went into a restaurant to have a quiet dinner, but soon found himself in the middle of the fierce row between a couple who could not agree on what wine to order with their meals. He left the place hastily, still chewing the food as he hurried down the street.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Ben went into a restaurant to have a quiet dinner

    Quote Originally Posted by Bassim View Post
    Would you please correct the mistakes in my sentences?

    Ben went into a restaurant to have a quiet dinner, but soon found himself in the middle of the a fierce row between a couple who could not agree on what wine to order with their meals meal. He left the place hastily, still chewing the his food as he hurried down the street.
    See above. You still write as if you're writing a novel (and you told us you're not).

    Here's a more colloquial version:

    Ben went to a restaurant for a quiet dinner but quickly realised the couple at the next table were having a massive row about what wine to order. Ben paid and ran. He was still chewing his last mouthful when he left!
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #3

    Re: Ben went into a restaurant to have a quiet dinner

    I fail to see why Ben ran out. Most of us would enjoy listening to the row.

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    #4

    Re: Ben went into a restaurant to have a quiet dinner

    emsr2d2,

    I really do not write a novel. This is the way how I write. I am posting these sentences just to see if they are grammatically correct, and if they sound natural in your ears. I see a word in a dictionary, or in some text, and from that word I am trying to form my own sentences. As you can see, sometimes I succeed, and sometimes not, but I have to write them down to know where I make the mistakes. If were to write some text about science my sentences would certainly be different, but in the sentences I post on this forum I am describing ordinary things, trying to describe the scene in the best possible way I can.

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    #5

    Re: Ben went into a restaurant to have a quiet dinner

    And that's fine but as we discussed in a previous thread, the word "natural" is a loaded one. Your writing would sound natural to me if you were writing a novel. It would not sound natural to me if you were my mate sending me an email simply describing a situation you'd encountered.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #6

    Re: Ben went into a restaurant to have a quiet dinner

    emsr2d2,
    If I met you in the street I would tell you, "Ben paid and ran." But if I wrote you a letter to tell you what I have experienced one evening, I would write, "Ben left the restaurant hastily." And then I would add more details to picture for you the scene I have witnessed. I am trying mostly to learn English people use in their writing, which is of course different from colloquial speech. But of course, if I lived in an English speaking country, my writing would be probably different and I would use more colloquial language.

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    #7

    Re: Ben went into a restaurant to have a quiet dinner

    Then it's a cultural difference. I don't change what words I say depending on whether I'm speaking or writing. I change them depending on my audience. I use the same words to speak to/email/text/FB message/Whatsapp a friend. I would use different words to speak to/email/text my boss.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #8

    Re: Ben went into a restaurant to have a quiet dinner

    emsr2d2,
    I agree with you that you change what you say depending on your audience. But for me writing a sentence is conveying a message. I want to convey it in the clear way so that a reader receives a picture which I want to give him, without the message being distorted. My problem in this moment is that I am not always sure if the words I have used convey that message as I want it. This is one of the reasons why my sentences sometimes sound odd. I use one "wrong" word, and the message becomes garbled. Of course, you as a native speaker have heard those words and phrases thousands of times, and you know how and where to use them, but I have to learn them from the beginning.

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    #9

    Re: Ben went into a restaurant to have a quiet dinner

    Why don't you try to write a little less formal paragraphs using the words that you have just learned? Think of writing an email to a friend. Here is my suggestion:

    You know Ben? He told me he went out last night for dinner but this couple kept squabbling on what to order. He said he left with his food in his mouth.

    (BTW, you don't expect a quiet dinner in a dinery)

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    #10

    Re: Ben went into a restaurant to have a quiet dinner

    andrewg927

    With all respect, I can't write the way you have written the above sentences. I can't lie to myself and pretend that I am something what I am not. I have written in this way all my life. When I went to primary and secondary school in Yugoslavia, many decades ago, my Serbo-Croatian teacher used to give us home assignments in which we should describe different situations and places, like a restaurant, a market, a street, a concert and different scenes from everyday life. We should use adverbs, adjectives, verbs, dialogues and also figures of speech. So as a child I used to write in such a way, and I can't change myself more then 40 years later. I am one person when I am talking , but when I am writing I turn into another person. For me, writing is a sacred thing, and therefore I am trying to do as best as I can. I am aware of my limits, errors and the enormous task I have in front of me, but I can't stop and leave the job unfinished.
    Last edited by Bassim; 29-May-2017 at 21:43.

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