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Playing for Pizza

  by John Grisham

(about 279 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:

tone, it could not be good. “I’m listening.” “What time did you leave the hospital today?” “I don’t remember. Maybe around nine.” “Well, you must’ve passed him in the hallway.” “Who?” “An investigator. Your cheerleader friend is back, Rick, quite pregnant, and now she’s got lawyers, some real sleazeballs who want to make some noise, get their mugs in the paper. They’re calling here with all sorts of demands.” “Which cheerleader?” Rick asked as new waves of pain swept through his shoulders and neck. “Tiffany something or other.” “There’s no way, Arnie. She slept with half the Browns. Why is she coming after me?” “Did you sleep with her?” “Of course, but it was my turn. If she’s gonna have a million-dollar baby, why is she accusing me?” An excellent question from the lowest-paid member of the team. Arnie had made the same point when arguing with Tiffany’s lawyers. “Is it possible that you might be the daddy?” “Absolutely not. I was careful. You had to be.” “Well, she can’t go public until she serves you with the papers, and if she can’t find you, then she can’t serve you.” Rick knew all this. He’d been served before. “I’ll hide in Florida for a while. They can’t find me down there.” “Don’t bet on it. These lawyers are pretty aggressive. They want some publicity. There are ways to track people.” A pause, then the clincher. “But, pal, they can’t serve you in Italy.” “I’ve never been to Italy.” “Then it’s is the world-famous prosciutto. You say Parma ham. Made only here, from special pigs raised on barley and oats and the milk left over from making the parmigiano. Our prosciutto is never cooked,” he said gravely, wagging a finger for a second in disapproval. “But cured with salt, fresh air, and lots of love. Eighteen months it’s cured.” He deftly took a small slice of brown bread, dipped it in olive oil, then layered it with a slice of prosciutto and a shaving of parmigiano. When it was perfect, he handed it to Rick and said, “A little sandwich.” Rick took it in one large bite, then closed his eyes and savored the moment. For someone who still enjoyed McDonald’s, the tastes were astounding. The flavors coated every taste bud in his mouth and made him chew as slowly as possible. Sam was slicing more for himself, and Nino was pouring wine. “Is good?” Nino asked Rick. “Oh yes.” Nino thrust another bite at his quarterback, then continued, pointing, “And then we have culatello, from the pig’s leg, pulled off the bone, only the best parts, then covered in salt, white wine, garlic, lots of herbs, and rubbed by hand for many hours before stuffed into a pig’s bladder and cured for fourteen months. The summer air dries it, the wet winters keep it tender.” As he spoke, both hands were in constant motionpointing, drinking, slicing more cheese, carefully mixing the balsamic vinegar into the bowl of olive oil

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 1392.98 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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