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navi
Posted: Wednesday, July 22, 2020 3:16:06 AM
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Joined: 5/16/2014
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Are these sentences correct:

1) He had to take his books and his computer. And impossible to leave behind, there was his mother's diary.
2) I had to choose between a few good men. There was Tom. There was Jack. And tall, strong and young, there was Pete.

Gratefully,
Navi
pjharvey
Posted: Wednesday, July 22, 2020 6:40:03 AM
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Joined: 4/13/2012
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I am not sure about the second.
I would end it with "...and there was tall, strong and young Pete".
I am not quite sure if it would be correct the way you wrote it with the addition of a comma, like this: "...and, tall, strong and young, there was Pete".
Orson Burleigh
Posted: Wednesday, July 22, 2020 3:10:10 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 10/12/2011
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Location: Annapolis, Maryland, United States
navi wrote:
Are these sentences correct:

1) He had to take his books and his computer. And impossible to leave behind, there was his mother's diary.
2) I had to choose between a few good men. There was Tom. There was Jack. And tall, strong and young, there was Pete.

Gratefully,
Navi


Your second sentence works very well from a literary point of view. The three good men who were to be subject to the narrator’s choice were listed in a parallel style: “There was Tom. There was Jack. [T]here was Pete.” The writer chose to provide additional information about Pete, using extra commas in a parenthetical fashion to set off the extra descriptive information (that Pete was tall, strong and young), while preserving that parallel style.
This is an example of the sort of tools which a skilled writer can use to guide readers.
navi
Posted: Wednesday, July 22, 2020 10:12:48 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 5/16/2014
Posts: 498
Neurons: 4,780
Thank you both very much,

How about the first one. Is that one correct? I think you are both saying 'yes', but I am not sure.

Gratefully,
Navi
Orson Burleigh
Posted: Thursday, July 23, 2020 12:11:00 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 10/12/2011
Posts: 255
Neurons: 140,041
Location: Annapolis, Maryland, United States
navi wrote:
Thank you both very much,

How about the first one. Is that one correct? I think you are both saying 'yes', but I am not sure.

Gratefully,
Navi


The two sentences shown as selection 1) work as well. If I were writing it, I would probably leave out there was and make one sentence: 1) He had to take his books and his computer, and, impossible to leave behind, his mother's diary.
That would be a style choice rather than a correction.
sureshot
Posted: Thursday, July 23, 2020 4:47:38 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/16/2015
Posts: 2,744
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navi wrote:
Are these sentences correct:

1) He had to take his books and his computer. And impossible to leave behind, there was his mother's diary.

Navi

_________________

Both the sentences, especially the second one starting with "and", need modifications. The two sentences give the sense that the subsequent statement is almost like an afterthought. With minimum alterations, I would prefer to say:

- He had to take his books and computer, and impossible to leave behind, there was his mother's diary too.

The following sentence also conveys the desired sense:

- He had to take his books and computer and also his mother's diary as it was impossible to leave it behind.

More variations are possible.


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