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A Higher Loyalty

  by James Comey

(about 365 pages)
total words
of all the books in our library
of all the books in our library
passive voice
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all adverbs
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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:

York knew something was going on that touched Hillary Clinton, and a search warrant was a big step. The circle was now larger than it had ever been, and included New York, where we’d had Clinton-related leaks in prior months. Concealing the new investigation and then having it leak right before the election might have been even worse, if worse can be imagined. But a reasonable person might have done it. I’ve also asked myself a hundred times whether I should have pressed for faster action after hearing something about Weiner’s laptop around the beginning of October. But I did not understand what it meant until October 27. I had moved on to other cases and problems, and assumed if it was important, the team would bring it to me. Had I been told about it earlier, I’m sure I would have had the same reaction I had on October 27—we need to go get those emails, immediately. Whether I should have, or could have, been told the details earlier than October 27 is a question I can’t answer. The 2016 presidential election was like no other for the FBI, and even knowing what I know now, I wouldn’t have done it differently, but I can imagine good and principled people in my shoes making different choices about some things. I think different choices would have resulted in greater damage to our country’s institutions of justice, but I’m not certain of that. I pray no future FBI director is gallons of milk. My mother would have called it a “lazy man’s load.” I tilted the two-wheeled hand truck back, noting the impressive weight, and made my way out of the cooler, pushing my right shoulder into the back of the hand truck, left hand on top of the stack. I banged through the swinging back-room doors and rolled along the dairy display cases. The weight was making me go faster and faster, so I took quick steps to keep the stack from falling back on me. At the milk display case, I stopped abruptly and pushed the hand truck hard upright, heedless of the basic laws of physics. The universe and the milk, of course, were not heedless. When I stopped short and heaved the hand truck upright, the crates kept going, momentum conserved, and fell like a towering tree in the very direction I had been pushing them before I stopped short. The tree of plastic crates hit the floor, hard. Instantly, the tops of those paper gallons burst open in unison, dumping more milk in one place than I had ever seen before. A twenty-four-gallon lake of milk began spreading along the dairy case and down the cereal, canned goods, and international foods aisles. It was a catastrophe beyond words. I ran to the back, grabbed a mop and bucket, and began frantically soaking up Lake Milk and squeezing the mop with the mechanism on top of the bucket. It had all been so quiet. Paper milk

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 1824.36 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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