scribbles tagged ‘voice’

Amelia pulls it off!

Sunday, April 3rd, 2011 | tags: , , ,  |

At the Chipping Sodbury finishing school for young ladies of good stock Mrs Thompkinson-Smythe’s ‘Floral Art and Table decor” course skills had transformed the graduation Marquee into a heavenly garden.  Amelia Penrith-Perkington steps up to the Dahlia festooned podium to recieve the class graduation award for “Lady most likely to Marry an Arabian Prince”. Alemia’s successful final year project in International Etiquette and Arabic stock had given her the edge over Maria Fountaine-Diddly who’s sister had already bagged a Shiek. We see a flash of red from the underside of Amelias 4 inch heals confirming that she has chosen just the right pair for the occassion. Like a lipizzaner she gently swings her mane (24 shades of honey blonde) removing strands from her eyes and the hinges of her Jackie Onassis sunglasses.

Despite being under canvas  Amelia keeps her Jackie O’s balanced pertly on her nose to hide the unexpected bruises from the recent cornea-corrective surgery.  She hopes her fellow students, and tutors, will forgive her for this little faux-pas. Failing to use the Jackie O’s as an alice-band to hold hair away from her face is a level 1 style error. Terribly middle class.  She regrets that the eye-corrective surgery happened so soon before graduation, but it really did have to happen before her coming out party. Relying on an emergency back-up pair of spectacles for  unanticipated contact-lense catastrophes just isn’t acceptable now that she’s nearly 18.

Amelia winces as she recalls how her hair had betrayed her last summer by flicking a contact lense from her left eye while riding in Al-amir Sagria’s Jaguar XKR convertible.  This had not been a problem on the drive to Newquay. Unfortunately, when they arrived at Jamie Oliver’s ‘Fifteen Restaurant’ Amelia had used the wall mounted urinals in the Gentlemans washrooms as a hand basin. Not an ideal way to prepare for the first course of moule mariner. Puking on the champaign ivory leatherette seat covers, just before Honiton, had not made for an idyllic end to the evening. Like silent lightening the Shieks people replaced the car. Amelia released a sigh, without letting her shoulders drop, at the thought that these traumas were now behind her.

As she turned to the podium Amelia caught a glimpse of the Govenor, Mrs Burke-Forster, texting! During the acceptance speech! Luckily, Mrs Burke-Foster finished her message before the applause and wolf whistles from some bizarre local people draped across the school boundary walls outside the Marquee, had stopped.

It gives me great pleasure….

Another writing exercise focusing on using another person’s voices. This time, imitating the style of another writer. I hope people who know the writer I am imitating will recognise the style 🙂
Amelia pulls it off!
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rinse and repeat

Tuesday, March 29th, 2011 | tags: , , ,  |

Oh my god, my head hurts! What a good night. Shazzer, John and Ally know how to have fun! I remember sitting on the floor in the kitchen but I can’t remember why! Must have been a good night!

Pinot Noir,  on BarSuch a good night, it’s going to take all Sunday to recover.  I’m going to have a lovely lie-in, stay in bed all morning while my head clears. Texting Shazzer, John and Ally to find out if they’re as wrecked as I feel and to find out what happened!

No! Shazzer, there’s no wine left! We drank all 8 bottles. Shazzer you’re SO crazy! NO! I’m not having a glass of wine with a fry-up,  I’m not making cupcakes with wine flavoured frosting! We drank all the wine REMEMBER! ‘Cos I don’t! LOL. But the bottles are empty! Shazzer’s such a scream! John’s so cute and he’s got some REALLY cute single friends. Ally’s gonna get John’s cute single friends along for next Saturday. Another great weekend coming up!

I WAS sat on the kitchen floor! I missed my chair, John pulled it out as I sat down, that’s so funny! I should loose weight, I’ve got large thighs, wine goes straight to my hips. You should see my bruises, I’ll facebook them, my arse is well purple, blue and yellow! Looks like the chair tried to beat the fat off my thights!  The bruises hurt nearly as much as my head,





222 word post where I try to write in a different, familiar voice. Thanks to Scarlet for suggesting how I go about choosing a voice
rinse and repeat
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2 bits of fabulous banter »

ways of describing the vernal equinox

Sunday, March 20th, 2011 | tags: , , , , , ,  |

Ostara, in the form of a hare is cohorting around the garden today, delighting the local adult children (Sampo and I) celebrating the shift from more than 12 hours of night to more than 12 hours of daylight.

With a clear view of the sky, in the Wendy House orangerie, the circular dining table has taken the role of an altar dressed in green cloth, laid with candles, flowers, seeds, pen and paper. Drinking large mugs of hot spiced apple juice from the caldron on the woodburner. Yummy. In a small celebration we’ve danced a clockwise circle round the table, written our hopes and desires on the paper, burnt the paper. Tomorrow I’ll put the ashes in the garden, plant the seeds where the growing daylight will nourish and draw them towards the sky

That’s the vernal equinox described in story form. The focus is on the people words that draw images and emotions, describing what people do and how they do it. This writing style is traditionally the domain  and humanities.

I find the scientific style of writing which often deliberately excludes explicit reference to people and beliefs fascinating in itself. Some ‘social sciences’ have included people by treating them as the objects to be studied, for example psychology that conducts research with human participants (not called people) and produces research papers written in the scientific tradition of the passive 3rd person. Wikipedia articles are examples of writing in the 3rd person passive, which I understand as core to the current scientific style. Wikipedia describes the vernal equinox in detail.

Here’s a few things I found out written in a more scientific style:

The word “vernal” is of Latin origin and refers to the season – spring. The word “equinox” is another word of Latin origin that means “equal night”. The vernal Equinox is a time when day and night are of nearly equal length, 12 hours, across the world. Today is the March equinox, which is the vernal equinox in the northern hemisphere and the autumnal equinox in the southern hemisphere.

ways of describing the vernal equinox
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Wednesday, March 16th, 2011 | tags: , , ,  |

His father

They’ve been together for 4 years. He’s only 21, it doesn‘t feel right. When I was his age I’d wake up in the morning, call my mates and we’d be in Athens by noon. We weren’t rich, we would find ourselves work there, stay all summer, make it up as we went along, We could get by. Don’t get me wrong, I love my wife, we’ve been together for 20 years, but I wouldn’t do it again. Wouldn’t get married again.

A bee bumbled between us

At 21 he should be seeing the world, not settling down, there’s plenty of time to settle down later.

Her mother

He‘s got no money, he doesn‘t go out, he just sits in front of the TV and eats junk food. He can‘t cook. He’s doing a computer games degree course. He’s written one game and even she thinks its crap. She’s insecure and he’s a safe bet, she doesn’t love him so he can’t hurt her. His mother visits every week to deliver the folded, bagged, fresh laundry and pick up the stuff that needs washing. He doesn’t even take the laundry out of the bag. His mother does my daughters laundry too. They’ve got no life in them

candlelight flickers across her damp eyes

He’s a couch potato and he’s making her into one.

PS thank you to Ben and Alison. Love you. 223 word post before the PS
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6 bits of fabulous banter »

comfortably middle class

Thursday, February 24th, 2011 | tags: , , ,  |

does that hurt?

It’s not what I was expecting. When you open the door to a stranger they normally introduce themselves or ask if some named person is in the house. We held each other’s gaze while I tried to work out what he was referring to, before moving us on

can I help you?

is Nicky in?      I meant your nose

Was my nose bleeding? I ran my forefinger under my nostrils then inspected my hand. No blood or snot.


He wore blue jeans, a Pringle jumper and a padded anorak that could have been picked up in a Marks and Spencer’s sale. Short back and sides, clean shaven, the boy lacked visual charisma. He looked comfortably middle class, visually unoffensive. Then it dawned on me that my nose-piercing probably made me unique amongst the people he talked to. Nicky was conservative with both a big and little c. She had already given me the benefit of her expertise on the painfully clashing colours of my dress, my unsuitable hair and recommended that I drop my friends because they risked being unsuccessful in life. They could drag me down.

Life. If she didn’t have one, she couldn’t fail. She was on-track for a Pharmacy degree, a husband, car, kids and holidays abroad. It didn’t map to my idea of life then. It doesn’t now.

Only when the temperature drops below -5 degrees

comfortably middle class
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sentient lay person

Monday, December 27th, 2010 | tags: , ,  |

Different software programs use language in different ways to do similar system-related activities. The tone of voice they use when talking to the person using the software can create different attitudes towards the software supplier. Below we see how the software program Mozilla starts talking to its user immediately after the program has crashed. It opens with an apology, it doesn’t brusquely announce and ‘error’ it talks directly to the users experience and deals directly with the emotional reaction of the user to the experience of a crash.

Well done Mozilla.

Mozilla are sorry

By contrast here we see Google, talking in its own internal language, showing that language to the user ‘Client Error’ what’s that when it’s at home apart from being a pain to me.

Poor show google.

Client Error

I have a growing collection of different ‘error’ messages from different major software providers. That Mozilla’s opening apology is the only one approaching engaging, even personable is a sad inditement on the software industry. Major companies could define their tone of voice as something that speaks reassuringly to me as an sentient lay person.

I wish they would

sentient lay person
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violent lover – his story

Sunday, September 13th, 2009 | tags: , ,  |

She ignored me. She blames me, but we both argued.   It takes two to argue. I drive from work straight to the hospital every night since the misscarriage and she lies there with her back to me.   She ignores me,   even when I shout at her she ignores me. She hasn’t spoken to me since the misscarriage.  She blames me, she lost it because of the stress.   I was stressed too, I hurt too.   She thinks she is the only one in pain and she just doesn’t listen to me, even when I shout. Bitch. At least she’s still there, at least I’ve still got the bitch.

violent lover – his story
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violent lover – her story

Saturday, September 12th, 2009 | tags: , , ,  |





violent lover – her story
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