Does this sentence make sense?

Discussion in 'Writing' started by jeff p, Mar 8, 2012.

  1. jeff p

    jeff p Registered User

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    They created a new world, bound with ties of unity and prosperity.


    When I first wrote this sentence, it seemed to flow rather nicely. but now I'm wondering if it's grammatically correct.



    Jeff
     
  2. N. E. White

    N. E. White Moderator Staff Member

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    Maybe it is a bit redundant? Maybe:

     
  3. jeff p

    jeff p Registered User

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    Thanks tmso

    I've actually seen the phrase " ..bound by ties of.." or "..bound by the ties.."

    If analyzing, the wording does seem redundant though. But then when it comes to language, there are countless phrases and expressions that make no sense if taken literally, but have a distinct meaning.

    Perhaps, I'll just keep it as is.
     
  4. pragmatist

    pragmatist pragmatist

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    jeff p:

    It reads ok to me.

    But I'm very new to this writing game, my grammar isn't great.
     
  5. tennesseemcvay

    tennesseemcvay Fictional Mountain Man

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    If my high school English serves me correctly the sentence is grammatically okay, although the comma may or may not be necessary but it does seem a little off somehow. Honestly with a tiny bit of context it would might make more sense.

    Also if you are having trouble with the grammatical side of things check out Strunks, The Elements of Style. It's a really nice go to in situations like this, and you can pick it up on Amazon for like 3 or 4 bucks.
     
  6. Chris_KW

    Chris_KW Registered User

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    My gut tells me a professional editor would change it to:

    They created a new world bound with unity and prosperity.

    But it's hard to know for sure without a reference point. That's also clearer and more concise. The original may be a tad overwritten.
     
  7. jeff p

    jeff p Registered User

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    Thanks for all the replies.

    There is a method to my madness though.

    The sentence is an excerpt taken from my prologue.
    The story involves two cities that became tied together literally through a network of cable & transport systems. Prosperous in the beginning, but over time will turn deadly

    It was meant to be a play on words.


    I guess if the phrasing doesn't ring incorrect, I'll probably just let it slide.


    cheers!

    Jeff
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2012
  8. Brian Kittrell

    Brian Kittrell Author & Writer

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    If you want some impact and foreboding:

    They created a new world bound by the chains of unity and prosperity.

    Such a sentence would make me raise an eyebrow and wonder what the implication was behind it. After all, unity and prosperity are often considered to be good things, so why describe them as "chains", which are usually thought to be bad to be bound by?

    Just a thought. Best of luck. :)
     
  9. jeff p

    jeff p Registered User

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    Thanks, Brian

    Your suggestion is an interesting idea and would indeed denote an air of conflict, but at this point in the prologue I'm portraying the two cities as a happy place!
    Only during the story itself do things go awry

    Jeff
     
  10. osney

    osney Cowherd, Author

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    It's sounds like an instance of telling not showing to me, but without context it's difficult to judge.
     
  11. Brian Kittrell

    Brian Kittrell Author & Writer

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    Ah, I see. Well, it's difficult to go without much other info, but maybe this conversation will help as things go along later. Maybe it will be useful for a sequel. :p
     
  12. Wojciehowicz

    Wojciehowicz Bewildered Visitor

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    Two cents... Ditch 'ties of'. Bound with whatever and whatever reads better to me. Ties sort of disjoints the whole thing, and makes me think of ribbons and bows, Tide detergent, and annoying neckwear that most of my employers demand. It also sounds promotional as if the third person omniscient author is speaking glowingly of it, because unity and prosperity are as judgmental as any other descriptors and positive ones. What is unity? What is prosperity? Whatever they are, the author seems to be saying that he or she thinks these cities have or had it and their positive nature says the author thinks this a good thing.

    I might be jaundiced, but I really like disclaimers that push back against anything too glowing and syrupy. "...bound with unity and prosperity, or at least unity in the name of prosperity." I like leaving it open to the reader as to whether this is a good thing. That last part makes it ambiguous as if I am questioning what they were bound with, or what their real motives for relations were, when in fact I actually think coming together in the name of prosperity is something people might want to try once in a while. Lead this way with the left hand and... roundhouse with the right to the side of the face.