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Sacred hunger

  by Barry Unsworth


(about 908 pages)
227,054
total words
of all the books in our library
49.82%
vividness
of all the books in our library
7.33%
passive voice
of all the books in our library
2.83%
all adverbs
of all the books in our library
0.96%
ly-adverbs
of all the books in our library
1.87%
non-ly-adverbs
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:

MOST PASSIVE PAGE
MOST VIVID PAGE
it was Paris who had deserted him, left him to die in ignorance. This box, which had been a parting gift, these papers, he had not forgotten them, not overlooked them: he had left them here because they belonged to a life that was over, one to which he had not intended to return; either that or he had been no longer among the living when the ship was drawn up here. Erasmus replaced the papers, closed the lid. One or the other it must be—it was the doubt that had brought him so far. If his cousin was dead, the ledger could be closed. If he were alive he had to be found and hanged. Somewhere in this wilderness they might be still, those who had survived. The stories of the Indians came to his mind. Stories or legends, Philips had not seemed sure… They would never have stayed here among the swamps. They would have made for higher, drier ground. Unlikely they had gone so very far, hampered and burdened as they must have been, and in such difficult terrain. His mind moved among possibilities with an insistent logic. They might not have stayed together, they might have scattered, gone their different ways. But there was safety in numbers. They might have made northwards in a body for Georgia or Louisiana. But that would have meant hundreds of miles through Spanish territory, with hostile Indians all along the northern borders. Could the remnants of the crew have the pools, plunging into the mangrove thickets that grew beyond them. Sweating profusely, stumbling among the intricate roots of the trees, sometimes floundering knee-deep in swamp, they kept a rough course between the shore and a chain of small brackish lagoons that ran parallel to it. The mouth of the creek, when they came to it, was dark as a cavern, roofed over with branches. There was no more than a foot or two of water in it, almost black and quite still, half choked in places with spreads of heavily scented, hyacinth-like flowers. Keeping as close as possible to the bank, they followed the channel as it wound inland. A crocodile, which had been sunning itself in a break among the trees, slithered without apparent haste down the bankside, broke the dark water into brief glitters and disappeared among a tangle of bushes. The creek began a wide curve away from the sea. Quite unexpectedly, following this round, they came upon the ship. She lay where the retreating water had left her, keel embedded in the mud bottom. In settling she had leaned heavily to port and the refuse of her decks had piled against the gunwales on that side. Creepers had found their way over her bows and clothed the ruined trellis of the forecastle railing. Drapes of pale green moss like horsestails had lowered on to her from the trees that arched overhead. Thick-stemmed vines had lassoed the stumps of her masts. Only the upper slope

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 4541.08 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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