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Total Mayhem

  by John Gilstrap


(about 470 pages)
117,411
total words
of all the books in our library
38.74%
vividness
of all the books in our library
8.39%
passive voice
of all the books in our library
2.51%
all adverbs
of all the books in our library
0.75%
ly-adverbs
of all the books in our library
1.77%
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
were actually FBI?” Jonathan took his time answering. That very question had been gnawing at him since before the smoke had cleared. “We’ll know after Mother Hen processes the fingerprints, but I don’t think so,” he said. “Maybe in the sense that we are FBI agents—part of the lend-lease agent program—but I’d be surprised if they were sworn agents. In fact, I’d be horrified if they were sworn agents.” “Because we killed them?” “Yeah, that, too,” Jonathan said. “More because the thought of federal agents committing cold-blooded murder is damned disturbing. What do you think?” “I think I’m with you,” Gail said. “I know for a fact that their assault tactics were not by any book I’m aware of. If they really thought we were a threat and they were making a SWAT-type assault, there’d have been backup. Even more than that, there’d have been patience. Whoever they were and whatever they were doing, it was all about making sure that people went home dead.” Jonathan stopped walking and turned back to face the mansion. They’d wandered a good half mile. He pointed to the building with his forehead and started strolling back. “The question for us, then, is why.” “Does it matter?” Jonathan stopped abruptly. “Are you serious?” She explained, “I don’t see how knowing the reasons behind their assault is going to change much of what we have to do.” Jonathan was shocked that they were having this conversation. “It affects everything we have to do much as washed his hands in the sink. The house existed as a place to hang one shirt, which dangled in the hall closet, still freshly wrapped in its plastic dry cleaning bag. Moving quickly now, as time was short, he stripped off his deliveryman’s shirt and pulled the powder blue oxford cloth shirt off its hanger. He was still shrugging into it when he took the other shirt to the fireplace at the far wall of the living room. A red plastic five-gallon gas can sat on the hearth. Kellner pushed the deliveryman’s shirt into the firebox, placed the gas can on top of it, and then used his pocket knife to cut a slit along the bottom. The stench of gasoline filled his sinuses as the fuel spilled everywhere. Taking care to keep himself dry, Kellner stood and headed for the kitchen and the garage beyond. He paused in the kitchen archway to lift a dish towel from the counter, which he wrapped around the top handle of an open-coiled portable electric space heater. He cranked the setting up as far as it would go, and then set the heater itself on the carpet of the living room, out to the extent of its power cord. Sooner than later, the gasoline vapors would find the coils, and when they did, there’d be a hell of a fire. And the cute little bungalow would burn to the ground because the fire department would be way too busy to fight

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 2348.22 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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