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Checkmate

  by Tom Clancy


(about 328 pages)
81,876
total words
of all the books in our library
60.64%
vividness
of all the books in our library
5.98%
passive voice
of all the books in our library
2.42%
all adverbs
of all the books in our library
0.76%
ly-adverbs
of all the books in our library
1.66%
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
garbage over there.” “Why did you remember this one detail? Out of everything you’d been through, why this one?” “Because I watched them do it and I thought how stupid they must be. I’m a simple man—not a smart man—and even I couldn’t believe what they were doing.” “Who else knows about this?” The old man pursed his lips, thinking. “Many, I imagine, but many are dead as well. Those that remember probably do their best to forget. Besides, who would want it?” Who indeed? Zhao thought. “Who have you told?” “No one!” the old man said, stiffening in his chair. “My son, no one else.” “That’s not quite true, is it, old man? You’ve told me.” “That’s different. It’s my granddaughter, you see—” “Yes, yes… very sick—you told me that, too.” “She’s all I have. I convinced her to join me there. I wanted her to go to school, make something of herself. InsteadThey’ve done things to her. Drugs. Men. She can’t get away from them.” Of course she can’t, he thought. The teenage prostitution market had always been profitable, and in the right country a petite Chinese girl would bring thousands. Drugged or sober, the clientele didn’t care. In fact, drugs made them easier to handle. “I heard you were a decent man,” the old man said. “I don’t believe the stories. They’re all liars. You’re a decent man. You can help her.” He refilled the old man’s cup. “And I will. You’ll have the top level, the tip of the pyramid, which was no larger than an average-sized bedroom. The pagoda’s exterior was two-toned red and black, the paint so thick with lacquer it shone in the moonlight. The sloping roofs, each shorter than its predecessor by a few feet, were covered in terra-cotta tiles and supported by massive wooden crossbeams. Paper lanterns dotted the lower eaves, casting pale yellow light on the front steps and the wraparound porch. Insane or not, Bai Kang Shek’s taste in architecture was exquisite. Fisher counted four guards, two on the front steps and two along the side closest to him. Unable to see the other two sides, he had to assume another four guards, for a total of eight. His study of the surveillance package had revealed a chink in the pagoda’s armor—and as with the hibiscus hedges all over the compound, it involved landscaping. The pagoda was enclosed on three sides by acacia trees. With thick, gnarled trunks and sturdy limbs, the acacia reminded Fisher of a slightly flattened broccoli floret. These trees had been allowed to overgrow the third-floor roofline. Twenty minutes later, having crawled inch by inch across the driveway and into the grove, Fisher stood up behind an acacia trunk and let out a relieved breath. He peeked around the tree to confirm the guards hadn’t moved. He grabbed a branch above his head and chinned himself up. The branch he’d scouted earlier extended horizontally from the trunk, over the heads

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 1637.52 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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