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The Bookshop of Yesterdays

  by Amy Meyerson

(about 444 pages)
total words
of all the books in our library
of all the books in our library
passive voice
of all the books in our library
all adverbs
of all the books in our library
of all the books in our library
of all the books in our library

clippings from this book

We’ve analyzed hundreds of millions of words, from thousands of different authors, training our linguistic models to recognize the most vivid words in the English language… the words that create the most intense sensory experiences: colors, textures, sounds, flavors, and aromas.

Based on our analysis, we’ve scanned through the pages of this book to find the two pages at the extremes, both the most-passive and the most-vivid pages, so that you can compare them side-by-side and see the difference:

all of you. When Billy didn’t respond, she said, I’ll let myself out. In the weeks of silence that followed, Billy’s words returned to Mom as she washed the dishes, drove me to school, forced herself to smile at the young actress who was decorating her first house. There’s nothing we can do. Did Billy actually believe that? Mom should have pushed him to stay in therapy. He’d quit the group after a few weeks. One-on-one would have been better. Or they could have done couples counseling, and they were a couple, inextricably linked. Mom believed in that inextricability. They were family. You don’t have to like your family, you only have to love them. And she loved Billy. She chose to see him as sensitive instead of selfish, as adventurous instead of unreliable. Billy chose to see himself as the aggrieved widower swindled by his resentful sister. And that’s what hurt Mom most, that Billy chose to see her this way. There’s nothing we can do. Billy’s words were true. Only, it wasn’t we, it was I. There’s nothing I can do. There was nothing Mom could do in high school when she knew Evelyn would crush Billy. Not in their twenties when she knew their getting back together was a mistake, even if she couldn’t have guessed that the mistake would prove fatal. And there was nothing she could do now to convince Billy that I could handle the truth, that whatever he wanted to do, they would stepped in. Paul followed. Garlic and burned toast lingered in the air. The floorboards creaked under their weight. Lee found the light switch next to the door. “First thing I saw were Billy’s socked feet dangling off the couch.” Billy’s legs were crossed at the ankles, and when Lee saw them hanging like that, he knew something was wrong. Bill? Lee shook Billy. He was lying facedown on the couch, seemingly asleep. Billy. He continued to shake him. Evelyn? Ev? Paul rushed over and pushed Lee aside. Billy, he said, grabbing Billy’s shoulders. Is he drunk? Paul leaned in to smell his breath and shook his head. He’s breathing. What’s wrong with him? I don’t know. Paul shook Billy, breathed into his mouth, shook him some more. Lee ran upstairs. Evelyn, he called. Evelyn, he screamed. The bedroom door was shut. He hesitated for a moment, then pushed it open. Evelyn was in bed, sleeping. Two pillows rested behind her head. Her long blond hair fell around her shoulders. She looked peaceful, beautiful. Too peaceful. Too beautiful. Lee shook her shoulders, softly at first, then violently. Evelyn’s eyes remained closed. Lee felt woozy like his head had been hit with a hammer. Paul, he shouted. Come quick. Paul ran into the room. She won’t wake up, either. Paul checked her pulse. Let’s get her out of here. Paul lifted Evelyn off the bed. Her head and feet dangled in his arms, her stomach an enormous beach ball between his hands

emotional story arc

Click anywhere on the chart to see the most significant emotional words — both positive & negative — from the corresponding section of the text…
This chart visualizes the the shifting emotional balance for the arc of this story, based on the emotional strength of the words in the prose, using techniques pioneered by the UVM Computational Story Lab. To create this story arc, we divided the complete manuscript text into 50 equal-sized chunks, each with 2221.50 words, and then we scored each section by counting the number of strongly-emotional words, both positive and negative. The bars in the chart move downward whenever there’s conflict and sadness, and they move upward when conflicts are resolved, or when the characters are happy and content. The size of each bar represents the positive or negative word-count of that section.

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