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The All-True Travels and Adventures of Lidie Newton

  by Jane Smiley

(about 793 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:

But Lorna says what happened to you happens all the time, and she thinks it’s a blessing, really, but it’s hard to see it for that, when… “ It was then that I realized I had lost everything. Something else might have happened: Samson and Chaney might have taken another road, and Thomas and I might have continued to our claim, put Jeremiah away for the night, gone to our little bed. I might have told him of my suspicions. It was August. Our crop would be ripening. Frank would certainly have turned up sometime, and by now I would have been sewing and knitting little clothes. Louisa would have taken a great interest in my condition, given me quantities of advice and assistance. We would have tormented ourselves with fears and worries—we had no money, war seemed perennially imminent, K.T. was hardly so hospitable as we had anticipated to either crops or men. I would have thought of Mrs. James, though perhaps never mentioned my thoughts. A midwinter birth in a rickety claim shack was something to be feared, was it not? What a treasure of fears these would have been! Now I feared nothing. “Oh! I’ve made you cry!” said Helen. She took my hand. “I’ve said all the wrong things! I haven’t talked about heaven at all, and heaven is our comfort! My mama could talk about heaven in the nicest way, as if it were a big lighted house and our whole life here was caught stealing. I kept on walking, not so fast as before. The afternoon light reddened and grew shadowy, and not so many folks passed me, leading me to wonder if I had gotten off the road to Independence. I scrambled down to a little stream I passed and took some water. It was clear enough. What could you eat? I hadn’t ever thought much about this question before. In Quincy, I ate what was set before me—pork, sometimes chicken, bread, corn bread, butter. Cucumbers. Pickles. Steak. Greens. Apples. Peaches like the wonderful peaches I had shared with Nehemiah (peaches were ripe in Missouri; I looked around but saw no orchards). Watermelons, which grew in the sandy areas down by the river. Eggs. A lovely boiled egg. Cakes and especially pies. Alice had liked to make pies, had a definite way with a crust. Toast. Jam. Blackberry jam especially, seeds and all. I had picked and boiled down many a pail of blackberries myself. Hotcakes. In K.T., we had prided ourselves on making do. Much was scarcer than in the States, though there were prairie chickens enough and turkeys. Bread flour was almost unknown, corn and cornmeal ubiquitous. Hot corncakes, stirred up with that limey water they had there, and a bit of salt. Well, there were many things worse and not many better. That was what I wanted right then—not anything fancier than that: just a dishful of fragrant yellow corncakes, with maybe a bit of honey

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 3963.58 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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