Old 01-08-2014, 04:34 PM   #1
trace_ekies
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Question Implied vs. Visual

Recently I was told that my writing is more 'implied' than 'visual'. Will someone please explain what this means.
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Old 01-08-2014, 04:35 PM   #2
lovecraft68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trace_ekies View Post
Recently I was told that my writing is more 'implied' than 'visual'. Will someone please explain what this means.
I would think it means you're work is subtle and you don't hammer things at people.

HP Lovecraft and the horror writers of his time implied rather than described.
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Old 01-08-2014, 04:39 PM   #3
sr71plt
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Sounds like it might be other words for the old "told" rather than "shown," with, perhaps, the suggestion that it's not always clearly told and the reader must figure out a lot her/himself. Did it seem to be a complimentary comment? Maybe you could link to the actual comment(?)
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Old 01-08-2014, 06:09 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by sr71plt View Post
... Did it seem to be a complimentary comment? Maybe you could link to the actual comment(?)
I had responded to a post on EF looking for someone to edit a story. The story had been written in English by an author whose native language was not English. As a sample I sent him a paragraph of his story recast so as to improve readability, (in my opinion), but endeavoring to maintain his original meaning.

After reading it he sent the following:

Quote:
... quite good. Your writing is more implied than visual though. Maybe a crossover would help? ... I had the feeling that you did not get the feelings of the main protagonist clear enough. like him being nervous with shaking hands. Maby sweaty palms and some confution of why this happens. As he knews his feelings is clear but not know what his sister is feeling at that time. You write pretty good. But I had the feeling I was reading some Lady porn novel. Not that it is bad. But it is not the style I want to go. Really sorry for that. ...
[Emphasis is mine.]

Maybe I should have but didn't, take it as criticism. I assumed it was simply a comment about differences in style. However, I don't understand what he meant.

Can you please explain what he was trying to tell me?
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Old 01-08-2014, 07:04 PM   #5
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Well, for openers, he seemed to be trying to convey to you that he don't speaka da English too guud. Beyond that he was saying that your showing of actions/gestures by the character didn't convey clearly enough to him what you meant the reader to understand. The problem there is that some readers have to be hit over the head with the meaning of gestures/actions more than others before they get it. Rots of Ruck in finding the right balance that pleases everyone.
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Old 01-08-2014, 07:18 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trace_ekies View Post
I had responded to a post on EF looking for someone to edit a story. The story had been written in English by an author whose native language was not English. As a sample I sent him a paragraph of his story recast so as to improve readability, (in my opinion), but endeavoring to maintain his original meaning.

After reading it he sent the following:

[Emphasis is mine.]

Maybe I should have but didn't, take it as criticism. I assumed it was simply a comment about differences in style. However, I don't understand what he meant.

Can you please explain what he was trying to tell me?
Ohh, I get it. This is about using abstractions where he wants sensory description. That's a common difference between "female" erotica and "male" erotica since men tend to be aroused be direct sensory impressions, while women tend to be aroused more by situations, emotions. Thus why men often prefer visual erotica while women often prefer novel-like erotica. Similarly men aren't always that in contact with their inner feelings and instead even in themselves may focus on surface symptoms as the physical expression of emotions.
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Old 01-08-2014, 07:50 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by sr71plt View Post
... The problem there is that some readers have to be hit over the head with the meaning of gestures/actions more than others before they get it. ....
I have been trying, at least a little bit, to use body language descriptions and dialog structures to convey feelings. Isn't that more visual than implied? Or do I also need to explain those things?
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Old 01-08-2014, 08:11 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trace_ekies View Post
I have been trying, at least a little bit, to use body language descriptions and dialog structures to convey feelings. Isn't that more visual than implied? Or do I also need to explain those things?
For some folks your descriptions will be too little; for some too much. That's why it's just best to write as you naturally write and don't apologize (or agonize).
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Old 01-08-2014, 08:25 PM   #9
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Maybe I'm stating the obvious here, but you're concerned with someone who does not speak English as a first language. So it could be that your descriptions are to implied for him because he does not have a firm grip on the language.
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Old 01-08-2014, 08:25 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by sunandshadow View Post
... men tend to be aroused be direct sensory impressions, while women tend to be aroused more by situations, emotions. ...
So you think he's trying to tell me that my writing is more suited to a female audience than a male audience?
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Old 01-08-2014, 08:36 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by lovecraft68 View Post
... it could be that your descriptions are to implied for him because he does not have a firm grip on the language.
That was my first thought but I didn't want to use that as an excuse for disregarding something that might very well be helpful.
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Old 01-08-2014, 08:41 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by trace_ekies View Post
That was my first thought but I didn't want to use that as an excuse for disregarding something that might very well be helpful.
If that's the case, the only one who can tell you what he means is him, and he's the one who you should be asking. The rest of this is spinning wheels and probably not helping you to take charge of your own writing.
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Old 01-08-2014, 08:45 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by sr71plt View Post
The rest of this is spinning wheels and probably not helping you to take charge of your own writing.
I think this would apply to a lot of threads here.
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Old 01-08-2014, 08:50 PM   #14
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Well . . . yes . . . of course.
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Old 01-08-2014, 09:08 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by sr71plt View Post
If that's the case, the only one who can tell you what he means is him, and he's the one who you should be asking. The rest of this is spinning wheels and probably not helping you to take charge of your own writing.
Unfortunately, I don't speak his native language, don't know anyone who does and asking him to explain this to me in English has already been done and did not yield much. (My earlier posting containing quotations from his emails includes his explanation.)

I do have to agree that it is now mostly spinning wheels. I started this thread with the assumption that 'implied' and 'visual' in relation to types of writing were terms that would be well known to the experienced writers that frequent this forum.

Apparently my assumptions were incorrect but your answers have nevertheless been very helpful. Thanks to all.
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Old 01-08-2014, 10:16 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by trace_ekies View Post
I have been trying, at least a little bit, to use body language descriptions and dialog structures to convey feelings. Isn't that more visual than implied? Or do I also need to explain those things?
If this is the case with your writing, then in my opinion you're doing fine.

The language barrier may be a hindrance here. But I think he may mean that he prefers really visual descriptions or maybe creative wordplay that conveys thought or feeling. To me, (other than the very literal use of what is visual writing) that's what he means. I think. He may want to see a little of that laced with the "implications" you've used.

But that's just an assumption, it could be as others have said, that because he doesn't have a good grip on the language, he likes things spelled out rather than implied.
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