Author Topic: Avoiding Wolfspeak and Purple Prose  (Read 478 times)

Lucikrux

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Avoiding Wolfspeak and Purple Prose
« on: October 10, 2020, 02:17:30 AM »
Hello! Today I bring to you both an important notice and a tutorial about improving your roleplaying! Especially if you’re new!



You might wonder, what on earth is wolfspeak? Purple prose? They don’t sound real!

Sadly, my friend, they are real, and are something you need to avoid and encourage others to avoid as well. I’ll go over wolfspeak first;

You can probably find out what Wolfspeak is through a quick google search. However, in case you’d prefer a less blunt definition, it’s when new and inexperienced role players start using words that they aren’t familiar with, especially anatomical terms.

An example of wolfspeak, I will italicize the incorrect words;

The mighty brujo stepped forward, flexing his daggers in a vicious display of aggression. His orbs flashed, and his radials bent as he caught a full glimpse of the fae. His ventral expanded as his dorsal arched, his cranium raising into the air, the fur craniul rising spitefully.

Now, an example of what you should type, without wolfspeak;

The muscular wolf stepped forward, baring his claws into the ground through a vicious display of aggression. His eyes gleamed with interest, and his ears twitched as he fully took in the sight of the she-wolf. His chest puffed up as he raised his head, the fur along his back prickling irritably.


As a tl;dr for how you can avoid Wolfspeak;

1. Never use purely anatomical terms in your roleplays. They might say “relating to the stomach” but that does not mean it can be used for stomach.

2. Don’t use words you don’t know. Google the meaning first if you must.

3. Open your favorite book, and look how they write. Are they using a lot of weird words you don’t know? Exactly.



Now, how about purple prose?

Put simply, this is where you use too many words to describe something that could be done in far less time. For example;

He moved carefully, at length, towards the lumberous hues of the interesting door. He was on his tip toes, his unnecessary gaze trained in the exit with passive dismay.

That’s not fun to read or remotely interesting. Thus;

Carefully, he bounded towards the door, watching carefully for any signs that he may be followed.

Better, right? Yeah. Length is nice, but it isn’t everything. If a post is short, it’s short.

LegendaryGrace

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Re: Avoiding Wolfspeak and Purple Prose
« Reply #1 on: October 10, 2020, 02:39:30 AM »
Although you have valid points, I think constricting people to limit what they do just makes it less fun. This is a game, not school. I firmly believe in education myself, but I've never understood why people get so concerned over what other people are doing. I get if the person was directly interacting with you, but I don't understand why people go after those just minding their own business. Again, you do you.

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Lucikrux

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Re: Avoiding Wolfspeak and Purple Prose
« Reply #2 on: October 10, 2020, 06:34:49 PM »
It isn’t about restricting what people do, it’s about helping prevent them from using wildly incorrect terms. A lot of roleplays exclude wolf speaking, and for good reason. No one wants to rp with an individual that swallowed a thesaurus and doesn’t even use the words correctly, to the point of not being understood.

It may sound harsh, but it’s what I myself experienced when I used wolfspeak. We should never enable bad literary behavior. What kind of person does that make us, knowingly letting people use words incorrectly and openly allowing themselves to experience embarrassment later on in life?

LegendaryGrace

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Re: Avoiding Wolfspeak and Purple Prose
« Reply #3 on: October 10, 2020, 10:22:46 PM »
You have valid points that I agree with myself, but I still think people should just mind their own business. It's impossible to control what others do or say, especially when you're not involved with them. Simple solution is to communicate with the other person that they do not understand or like wolfspeak and to politely ask them to not do it or simply don't roleplay with them. There's plenty of people out there to rp with that will share similar views.

I just wanted to bring up a different perspective on this subject as I think it is interesting. Who says that not using wolfspeak is the only correct way of communication? What about abbreviations used in text messages or other languages? What about coded messages or the languages made up as a kid or with your friend? It's an interesting subject to think about, in my opinion. If it communicates the message to the other person I believe it works.

In response to your question "What kind of person does that make us, knowingly letting people use words incorrectly and openly allowing themselves to experience embarrassment later on in life?" We cannot be at fault for things that are not in our control. Sure, let them know that it may be made fun of, but it goes both ways. I was told by a teacher in high school that my writing was not creative enough and I needed to use bigger vocabulary. Today, I find that what she had told me was wrong. Stephen King shares a similar sense of writing style as I do and he's considered a brilliant and successful writer.

It's all about perspective, I just do not believe in putting others down for things they do differently. 

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Re: Avoiding Wolfspeak and Purple Prose
« Reply #4 on: October 11, 2020, 12:45:37 AM »
Hey ya'll I don't mean to butt in!
But let's try to be a bit considerate of others roleplay styles
I fully understand both perspectives and I think this is a fine discussion to have (I think this intriguing if anything), but overall let's keep an open mind regarding this.
We all use word salad at some point in our roleplay posts to make them more robust, and I don't think it's inherently a bad thing. If anything it's a learning curve and a part of honing your writing skills. I don't think theres one right nor wrong way to get there imo.

That isn't to at all discredit any of the points brought up in this inital thread! I definitely agree with some of it, and I think its highly important to know what the context of some of your words in your posts. Because more times than not I've seen people accidentally use a word that they think is one thing but actually means something highly inappropriate, and not what they initially thought. So I think context all around is important

That said, thank you for this thread. I think there is some use of it for roleplayers who may want to cut down on their wolfspeak or want to improve their posts, and additionally for Grace' two cents. This is most definitely a great discussion, but again, let's make sure we remain courteous.

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LegendaryGrace

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Re: Avoiding Wolfspeak and Purple Prose
« Reply #5 on: October 11, 2020, 03:02:57 AM »
Hey ya'll I don't mean to butt in!
But let's try to be a bit considerate of others roleplay styles
I fully understand both perspectives and I think this is a fine discussion to have (I think this intriguing if anything), but overall let's keep an open mind regarding this.
We all use word salad at some point in our roleplay posts to make them more robust, and I don't think it's inherently a bad thing. If anything it's a learning curve and a part of honing your writing skills. I don't think theres one right nor wrong way to get there imo.

That isn't to at all discredit any of the points brought up in this inital thread! I definitely agree with some of it, and I think its highly important to know what the context of some of your words in your posts. Because more times than not I've seen people accidentally use a word that they think is one thing but actually means something highly inappropriate, and not what they initially thought. So I think context all around is important

That said, thank you for this thread. I think there is some use of it for roleplayers who may want to cut down on their wolfspeak or want to improve their posts, and additionally for Grace' two cents. This is most definitely a great discussion, but again, let's make sure we remain courteous.

I apologize if I may have come off as rude, I can see where I may have come off as that. I did not intend to harm anyone's feelings, but some of my statements were rather blunt. "People should mind their own business" might of been poor word choice, but I used that as it was straight to the point, not as a tell-off as some would take it.

Context is extremely important. It sort of adds to what I was trying to say. It's a game not school, that was my way of saying it in a way. I do think Birdie, that you brought up a fantastic point about mistaking a word for being harmless when in fact it is inappropriate. In that context, I definitely would not encourage the word's use and I myself would probably say something to the person to let them know what that word actually means. 

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