Tone and emotion


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Thread: Tone and emotion

  1. #1

    Tone and emotion

    Here is an exercise in emotional tone, or something. I am not sure exactly what to call it, but I am sure you will get the idea.

    Write a short description of the view from a place where a traveller has stopped for a break.

    Firstly write it from the point of view of a man who is coming from the birth of his son.
    Secondly from the point of view of a woman who has just identified her daughter in a mortuary.

    This is the important bit.
    Do not mention the travellers, what has happened to them, or anything about them. Only write the description of the view.

    The vocabulary used springs to mind instantly, but you might find it helpful to consider things like sentence length and construction, and even the types of vowels and consonants you use.
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  2. #2
    I joined this forum because I thought it might give me some ideas to help with targeted practice and this seems to be the very thing I am looking for, so here we go. Two short paragraphs a bit rushed between work and a track session, I would be interested in some constructive criticism and then I shall redraft and see if I can do better.

    Thanks for this!

    He couldn't feel the bench, it didn't matter anyway. The light bounced off the water sending sparkles and flashes rippling across the surface of the canal into the banks. Trees and rushes met the water there creeping up through the old detritus left by man. The trolleys and broken buckets buried by a vibrant greens, being slowly hidden from view. Cold air flooded lungs and it felt good, clean, refreshing just what a tired body needed, the night had been so full and this morning all the tension could be let go. This seat on the familiar canal side was viewed with new eyes. The old path seemed to stretch out to infinite possibilities, the roots and half buried stones had a special beauty to them. Even the muddy puddles reflected that shining sun dancing and throwing small patches up to illuminate the overhanging trees. It was time to continue, and although home was the destination at this moment he had no idea where this journey started this morning would end.

    The bench was cold. It was bone achingly cold like the air that filled worn out lungs. She had taken the seat after a long hard night, this was not how things should be and, the familiar canal path home seemed so different. Light smashed into the water breaking it into fragments which found their way, burning into hollow sockets of eyes. The rubbish that man had left choked the banks up, buckets and trolleys and broken bottles. The weeds that grew between seemed poisonous, just too green to be real, peeking with malevolence between the rubbish. Slowly rising to her feet she trudged down the path, roots and stones conspiring to trip her up. Although home was the destination she had no idea where this mornings journey would end.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Saul Bee View Post
    I joined this forum because I thought it might give me some ideas to help with targeted practice and this seems to be the very thing I am looking for, so here we go. Two short paragraphs a bit rushed between work and a track session, I would be interested in some constructive criticism and then I shall redraft and see if I can do better.

    Thanks for this!

    He couldn't feel the bench, it didn't matter anyway. The light bounced off the water sending sparkles and flashes rippling across the surface of the canal into the banks. Trees and rushes met the water there creeping up through the old detritus left by man. The trolleys and broken buckets buried by a vibrant greens, being slowly hidden from view. Cold air flooded lungs and it felt good, clean, refreshing just what a tired body needed, the night had been so full and this morning all the tension could be let go. This seat on the familiar canal side was viewed with new eyes. The old path seemed to stretch out to infinite possibilities, the roots and half buried stones had a special beauty to them. Even the muddy puddles reflected that shining sun dancing and throwing small patches up to illuminate the overhanging trees. It was time to continue, and although home was the destination at this moment he had no idea where this journey started this morning would end.

    The bench was cold. It was bone achingly cold like the air that filled worn out lungs. She had taken the seat after a long hard night, this was not how things should be and, the familiar canal path home seemed so different. Light smashed into the water breaking it into fragments which found their way, burning into hollow sockets of eyes. The rubbish that man had left choked the banks up, buckets and trolleys and broken bottles. The weeds that grew between seemed poisonous, just too green to be real, peeking with malevolence between the rubbish. Slowly rising to her feet she trudged down the path, roots and stones conspiring to trip her up. Although home was the destination she had no idea where this mornings journey would end.
    I like this, and I intend to have a crack at it too when time permits. I don't think this section is for critiques, but I just wanted to say that you have captured positivity well in one piece and portrayed displaced anger in the other.


  4. #4
    You did this well. I felt the joy in the man at the birth of his child by how he viewed his surroundings. The tone was sharp and alive and the emotional content was a feeling of excitement-- well done on that part,

    As for the tone in the woman's perspective, it was dull and dark, and the emotional content was numb and joyless-excellant.

    Your descriptive language was impressive...

    Well done -you made this exercise exciting-

    When I have the time I think I'll put my ink to it as well.


    warmest
    bob
    Last edited by rcallaci; August 8th, 2016 at 11:30 PM.
    Nature weeps, the devil sings
    at mans greed and pride
    and what it brings

    Just lots of useless
    little things

  5. #5
    Thanks for the feedback rcallacl and Phil, thought I could tweak slightly, make things a little less explicit in places and polish it a bit.

    He couldn't feel the bench, it didn't matter anyway. The light bounced off the water sending sparkles and flashes rippling across the surface of the canal into the banks. Trees and rushes met the water creeping up through the old detritus left by man. The trolleys and broken buckets buried by vibrant greens were being slowly hidden from view. Cold air flooded lungs and it felt good, clean, refreshing just what a tired body needed, the night had been so full and this morning all the tension could be let go. The old path seemed to stretch out to infinite possibilities, the roots and half buried stones had a special beauty to them, even the muddy puddles reflected that shining sun throwing small dancing patches of light into the leaves above.

    The bench was cold. It was bone achingly cold like the air that filled worn out lungs. She had taken the seat after a long hard night and the familiar canal path home seemed so different. Light smashed into the water breaking itself into razor sharp fragments which found their way, burning into hollow sockets. The rubbish that man had left choked the banks up, buckets and trolleys and broken bottles seemed to crush any life struggling to find a way out. The weeds that escaped peeked with malevolence between the rubbish dripping with thorns and stings, grabbing at any weary and unwary pedestrian. Slowly rising to her feet she trudged down the path, roots and stones conspiring to trip her up.


    Improvement or not?

  6. #6
    1) Man and son.

    Jack pulled into the Canton Ohio Rest Area, parked the car, and sat holding the steering wheel for a moment. A light rain fell on the windshield. He watched the droplets find their way down into the wiper catch, gaining steam and size as they went. He couldn't keep up with them. His hands tightened, then he let go. He pulled the key from the ignition, placed it in his pocket, and opened the door. At first, he sat there, studying the red-brick building with its curving ceiling and its high, glass doors. He saw the lights of vending machines and the rack of brochures tucked just inside the door. He saw the overheads glisten off the tile floor inside and closed the door. He slipped the key back into the ignition and turned the car back on. He was the only car in the lot, a consequence of the late hour. The asphalt went on forever, stretching all the way around the building and back towards I-90. He could see the trees off in the distance, the clouds parting to let the moon through. It lit up the droplets on his windshield. He didn't have the heart to wipe them off.

    2) Woman and daughter.

    Whitney Elizabeth Carter pushed the clutch to park, turned the headlights off, and then the heat. She watched her breath curl up against the glass as rain fell against it. Through the screen of droplets, she saw the gray, concrete roof, the shaded brick, and the stark sidewalks as they snaked around the building. Springs fragile chutes were sprouting through the mulch and browning weeds fighting through the cracks in asphalt and cement alike. The tar stretched in every direction. Whitney opened the door and pressed it shut behind her. The rain had gathered into puddles, the mulch turned to muck, the closer she looked at it. She walked toward the front door and saw the inside was dark, aside from emergency lighting. She tried the door, but it was locked. The rail rattled on the roof overhead. She put her back against the cold glass and slid to the ground, wrapping her knees with her arms and pulling them close against the rain.
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  7. #7
    The description is good and I can see this rest stop in my minds eye.
    I had forgotten which way round the challenge worked and was confused by the line 'not having the heart to wipe them off' It could be read either way, as someone too tired and defeated or as somebody who just enjoyed the beauty.

    The woman was definitely upset and I could see and feel the defeated resignation as she slid down the glass door.

    I enjoyed your take.

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