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Elektra
01-11-2007, 05:48 PM
When writing a historical or fantasy, do you guys take word origin into account? For example, I like, if I can, to have Zeus say something 'jovially', and avoid phrases like 'train of thought', which, though in use before modern technology, still imply it. Do you guys have any of these hang-ups, or am I just really insane (or at least more so than I thought before)?

Nateskate
01-11-2007, 08:31 PM
When writing a historical or fantasy, do you guys take word origin into account? For example, I like, if I can, to have Zeus say something 'jovially', and avoid phrases like 'train of thought', which, though in use before modern technology, still imply it. Do you guys have any of these hang-ups, or am I just really insane (or at least more so than I thought before)?

Good point. I'd say a poorly phrased saying is kind of like a "mood breaker", to that period, a wet blanket.

It's harder to do than to understand. We're jargonaholics, and might not even notice. When I read Chronicles of Narnia, (Although it was a blend of times) when C.S Lewis used metaphors to describe something in Narnia, he would at time use the present.

So, you might say, "The giant rolled down the mountain like an out of control steamtrain", but it woud be better to draw a metaphor from that time period. "The giant rolled down the mountain like a thundering herd of elephants..."

Elektra
01-11-2007, 09:18 PM
Tolkien actually used a train simile in FotR--drives me nuts.

robeiae
01-11-2007, 09:25 PM
"Marcus Aurelius went on and on like a broken record."

ColoradoGuy
01-11-2007, 09:32 PM
I think a metaphor should not draw attention to itself as a metaphor -- it should easily click in the reader's mind. Using an anachronistic metaphor doesn't click, it clunks. So I say don't make Zeus ride a train or have Frodo think in hyperlinks.

sunandshadow
01-11-2007, 11:02 PM
The problem is equally difficult if you want to have a viewpoint character living in the near future, to be realistic you would have to invent a whole slew of new slang.

jbal
01-11-2007, 11:05 PM
It's funny you bring this up, Elektra. I've been trying to avoid this very thing in my WIP, keeping metaphors within the context of the pov character, something he/she would understand or think. I've caught myself a few times, and I'll bet there's a bunch I didn't catch. I thought I was just being anal though.

ColoradoGuy
01-11-2007, 11:29 PM
The problem is equally difficult if you want to have a viewpoint character living in the near future, to be realistic you would have to invent a whole slew of new slang.
As successfully done in A Clockwork Orange

sunandshadow
01-12-2007, 12:21 AM
As successfully done in A Clockwork Orange

Well, successful if you don't mind that Clockwork Orange is almost unreadable because the ration of slang words to regular words is too high. But yes, that is a good example of what I meant.

And then there's the possibility of creating magical, science fictional, or alien terms...

Higgins
01-20-2007, 03:23 AM
The problem is equally difficult if you want to have a viewpoint character living in the near future, to be realistic you would have to invent a whole slew of new slang.

Slew of new slang

I gotta thinka about that...sounds swell...

vrabinec
01-22-2007, 09:01 PM
When writing a historical or fantasy, do you guys take word origin into account? For example, I like, if I can, to have Zeus say something 'jovially', and avoid phrases like 'train of thought', which, though in use before modern technology, still imply it. Do you guys have any of these hang-ups, or am I just really insane (or at least more so than I thought before)?

It's a tall order. When I will finish my WIP which takes place in the 1890's, I'm going to have to sift through my etymology book and make a list of words that I may have used. Obviously I wouldn't have used xerox or some other such word, but there will be some words, for instance plumbing terms. Then I'll search the MS for them and eliminate them whether they're in the narrative or dialogue for effect. MS Word can do a search like this fairly quickly.

sunandshadow
01-22-2007, 10:49 PM
Slew of new slang

I gotta thinka about that...sounds swell...
:tongue