Rewrite

22 June 2017 03:01 am
igenlode: The pirate sloop 'Horizon' from "Treasures of the Indies" (Default)
[personal profile] igenlode
For some reason I seem to be having a lot of trouble getting effective phrasing for Gustave's big speech in chapter 4 -- despite having the whole thing pretty much planned out in advance, as opposed to the trouble I had in 'winging it' with the Phantom in chapter 2. I sincerely hope I don't end up having the same problem when it comes to Raoul's pivotal letter...




Here's a quick piece of unsolicited rewriting that I did instead as an exercise on somebody else's fiction, in an attempt to prove that I still had the knack of turning an improved phrase.

"With the main hall's lights only at half current, both men standing amidst the Symphony Societies chairs on the otherwise empty stage of Carnegie Hall were cast deeply in the relief of the subdued illumination. A hesitant melody issued forth from the strings of a solitary violin before a short laugh once more resulted in an aborted attempt" -- this jarred particularly heavily on my ear :-(

My attempt at getting the passage to sound more natural: "The lights of Carnegie Hall, currently only at half-brightness, cast a dim illumination over the rows of chairs set up for the Symphony Society on the main stage, and laid deep contrasting shadows across the features of the two men who stood together there. A solo violin began to play, hesitantly, but the player broke off the melody moments later in yet another abortive attempt, with a short laugh at his own expense."

(The answer, I suspect, is that it took me ten minutes to rework those two sentences, and the author, with fifty or sixty chapters of Grand Epic to spin out, didn't spend anything like that long in contemplating the question...)
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igenlode: The pirate sloop 'Horizon' from "Treasures of the Indies" (Default)
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