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Thursday, January 1, 2009

Workout Solution: Poor Nona

I love how all of you took something different away from poor Nona!

Each of you rewrote the sentence and managed to slip in some of your views. Although I originally had a very different aim in mind...

Personally, I wouldn't ever use that sentence (or any like it) in a book unless I was severely limited on word count. Nona had lived a very simple life before this, she's never had much as a child because her parents were very poor. That could be the opening of the book, or a phrase in the middle, or even the ending, but it will always be telling.

I'd rather sprinkle actions throughout the book that show how Nona was raised and what her attitude toward money is. Here was my list of actions:
- hording, being fearful of spending money because you're afraid you won't have more
- never filling the plate and preferring seconds to one large course (saving food for later)
- being unreasonably upset when something is broken
- counting money at odd times
- feeling uncomfortable with excess or gifts
- going to extremes with her clothing...either wearing very expensive things to show off what she had or wearing very simple and old clothes to conserve money
- depending on the era... hiding money under the mattress or eschewing banks (especially true of Great Depression children)
- preferring to do their own work even if it isn't necessary (no maid, no cook, ect)
- fretting over money spent
- being offended by frivolous spending
- counting the cost of basic things (food, heat, water) when it shouldn't be a concern
- going to excess with charity, either being overly generous or very miserly
- keeping track of everything/micromanaging

Those simple things, woven into the story line, could show the reader Nona's attitude without the author ever stating "Nona had been poor, and that made her hate to spend money."

Now that you've seen my list, is there anything you'd like to add?


  1. Yes. I'd like to add....

    she should still do the hula!

    *giggles* heeheeheeeheee!

  2. Yes, we all bring something to the table when we write... So are you going to give us your new version of the sentence??