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  1. Key Member
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    #1

    contrast between a busy class and a quiet one

    Hello.

    I'm trying to describe the contrast between a very busy class and the silence that ensues after students leave it. I have a character who is in a reflective mood.
    He can't think when students are in the class but when they leave, he starts thinking and remembering things.

    Can I use "commotion"? What do you think about what I've written:

    The commotion of the class gave way to a sudden quiet. Jack looked around. He was the only one left in the now dark class. The images from last night hidden during the busy class started intruding in his mind in the silence. Julia's words still hurt.

  2. Raymott's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: contrast between a busy class and a quiet one

    Quote Originally Posted by alpacinoutd View Post
    Hello.


    The commotion of the class gave way to a sudden quiet. Jack looked around. He was the only one left in the now dark class. The images from last night hidden during the busy class started intruding in his mind in the silence. Julia's words still hurt.
    The commotion of the class had given way to a sudden quiet. Jack looked around. He was the only one left in the now dark classroom. The images from last night, obscured during the busy class, started intruding into his mind in the silence. Julia's words still hurt.

    "had given" - You're describing the time when Jack was sitting alone. If you were narrating in sequence, "gave way" might work. Also, it depends on the previous sentence and paragraph, and probably the following. I just think "had given" is better. It isolates Jack from the scene before.

    "obscured" - "hidden" doesn't sound right. There are other words you could use there.

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    #3

    Re: contrast between a busy class and a quiet one

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post

    "obscured" - "hidden" doesn't sound right. There are other words you could use there.
    What other options do I have?

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    #4

    Re: contrast between a busy class and a quiet one

    forgotten/buried/consigned to oblivion?
    I am not a teacher or a native speaker.

  5. Key Member
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    #5

    Re: contrast between a busy class and a quiet one

    Does this work?

    The commotion of the class had given way to a sudden quiet. Jack looked around. He was the only one left in the now dark classroom. The images from last night, burried during the busy class, started intruding into his mind in the silence. Julia's words still hurt.

  6. Raymott's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: contrast between a busy class and a quiet one

    Well, the images weren't "buried" either. The problem as I see it is that you are trying to use a too concrete adjective with a too abstract noun ("images"). That's why I suggested "obscured" (which could be improved upon). What has happened to the images is that they have gone out of your consciousness, because the commotion in the class has temporarily displaced them from consciousness. Nothing physical has happened to them. They're not buried or hidden. ted is right with "forgotten".
    How about "displaced by the commotion of the class". You'd have to think of a different word to replace the first "commotion". The problem with English is that there are too many words. But that's also a gift to a good writer!

    How about:"Once the noise died down, the images from last night, displaced by the commotion of the class, began to creep back into his mind."
    But you must choose what sounds best to you.

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