NEW YORK — Psychopaths are known to be wily and manipulative, but even so, they unconsciously betray themselves, according to scientists who have looked for patterns in convicted murderers' speech as they described their crimes. The researchers interviewed 52 convicted murderers, 14 of them ranked as psychopaths according to the Psychopathy Checklist-Revised, a 20-item assessment, and asked them to describe their crimes in detail. Using computer programs to analyze what the men said, the researchers found that those with psychopathic scores showed a lack of emotion, spoke in terms of cause-and-effect when describing their crimes, and focused their attention on basic needs, such as food, drink and money. [10 Contested Death Penalty Cases] "The beautiful thing about them is they are unconsciously produced," Hancock said. These unconscious actions can reveal the psychological dynamics in a speaker's mind even though he or she is unaware of it, Hancock said. What it means to be a psychopath
Textual AnalysisPhoto by Murray Close/Lionsgate, Inc. This weekend, millions of preteens will flock to theaters to take in the Hunger Games sequel, Catching Fire, just as millions of preteens flocked to each of the five Twilight movies. For the most part, however, these will not be the same people. Of the tens of millions who identify themselves on Facebook as fans of either of the two series, less than 20 percent are fans of both. Though both series are set in fantasy worlds and feature female leads, readers and moviegoers seem to ally themselves with either Team Stephenie or Team Suzanne, but not both. Why might a reader take a shine to one series and not the other? To answer this question, I could have read all of the books and offered my opinion on the authors’ respective styles. “Textual analysis” sounds complicated, but it’s actually quite simple—a better term for it might be “counting words.” And below is a list of most common -ly adverbs by author. J.K.
Accents and DialectsPublic Domain / CIA NOTE: This guide uses the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA). For information about this notation, please visit my page of International Phonetic Alphabet Resources. There are obviously many North American accents. For reference, here is a list of only the most common classifications in the United States and Canada. General American This refers to the spectrum of ‘standard’ English spoken by newscasters, TV actors, and a large percentage of middle-class Americans. Prominent Features: The short-a (as in cat) is raised and diphthongized before nasal consonants. Accent Samples: Eastern New England English This describes the classic “Boston Accent.” New York City English One of the more famous American accents, the classic “New Yorkese” has been immortalized by films (“Goodfellas,” “Marty,” and “Manhattan,” among countless others), TV shows (“All in the Family,” “Seinfeld,” “King of Queens”) and plays (“A View from the Bridge,” “Lost in Yonkers,” “Guys and Dolls”). Conclusion
EtymologyWriting Empathetically/Sympathetically/SentimentallySeveral weeks ago, I read a story that had a passage like this: "My parents never really cared about me," Allie said. "All my life they saw me as a disappointment, a waste of space. I was always the butt of their jokes. And no one really noticed. And it went on like this for about a paragraph or two. I could see that the writer wanted to foster sympathy for the character, wanted to explain how the character felt about her upbringing. But ultimately, it made her sound whiny--and I could tell that wasn't what the author intended. At first I was a little sympathetic to the character. . .then after several sentences, the writing just felt sentimental to me, meaning, I felt like the writer was trying to coax me to feel a certain way, like I was being controlled, rather than letting me feel for the situation myself. It's a good idea to want your readers to connect with your characters' hardships, but it can backfire if it's too sentimental or sometimes even when it's sympathetic. Remember,
Bad News in WritingWhile you can't turn bad news into good through clever wording, the way that you deliver bad news in writing can affect how it is received the same way that it does when speaking. Some speakers know how to deliver bad news, and others only make it worse. The same is true in writing. The introduction is very important. The bad news itself should go in the middle of your message. Once delivered, the bad news should be followed by the remedy, lesson learned, or course of action that will result in future prevention or improvement. Conclude by showing that you care. The key to delivering bad news is trust. By Carl Dickson, Founder of CapturePlanning.com Click here for more free articles like this one
Words and Phrases Coined by ShakespeareWords and Phrases Coined by Shakespeare NOTE: This list (including some of the errors I originally made) is found in several other places online. That's fine, but I've asked that folks who want this on their own sites mention that I am the original compiler. For many English-speakers, the following phrases are familiar enough to be considered common expressions, proverbs, and/or clichés. I compiled these from multiple sources online in 2003. How many of these are true coinages by "the Bard", and how many are simply the earliest written attestations of a word or words already in use, I can't tell you. A few words are first attested in Shakespeare and seem to have caused extra problems for the typesetters. The popular book Coined by Shakespeare acknowledges that it is presenting first attestations rather than certain inventions. Words like "anchovy", "bandit", and "zany" are just first attestations of loan-words. Right now I'm in the process of referencing these. firstname.lastname@example.org
Active Voice Vs Passive VoiceToday's topic is active voice versus passive voice. Here's a question from Brian in Iowa. He writes, “It drives me crazy when people write in passive voice. How can I teach people how to tell the difference between passive and active voice and to stay away from passive voice?” Well, Brian is right, the first step is to help people understand the difference between active and passive voice, because many people believe they should avoid the passive voice, but fewer people can define it or recognize it. What Is Active Voice? I'll start with active voice because it's simpler. Another example is the title of the Marvin Gaye song “I Heard It through the Grapevine.” What Is Passive Voice? In passive voice, the target of the action gets promoted to the subject position. If you wanted to make the title of the Marvin Gaye song passive, you would say “It was heard by me through the grapevine,” not such a catchy title anymore. Next: Is "To Be" a Sign of Passive Voice? Is Passive Voice Always Wrong? 1.
Thought VerbsWriting ThesaurusesPerception and LanguageStorytelling is a buzzword with lots of different interpretations. Either the internet is killing stories, or it’s the best thing to happen to them since the printing press. Article Continues Below Stories have been around as long as we have, helping us understand our world and ourselves. We learn and retain information best through stories, because they turn information into more than the sum of its parts. But what makes a story a story, and what does it mean for the digital world we’ve built?” What Dickens knew#section1 Charles Dickens should be the mutton-chopped mascot of the web. There are few writers working today as open to public comment—as skilled at manipulating public sentiment, and as concerned with the advancement of his medium—as Dickens was for his time. In the last chapter of each installment, his sentences grew shorter, more active, and more visual. Comprehension: the other side of the story#section2 The reality is that we never perceive a story exactly as it’s composed.