What is so wrong with "purple prose"?

I write stories in "purple prose" that are extremely descriptive with minimal plot.. What is so wring with that??

If i was to just write a story without all the descriptive language, i may as well just write out the plot in dot points!!

Can someone please enlighten me as to why "purple prose" seems to have evolved into one of the 7 deadly sins?!!

5 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Nobody wants to read a story so covered in fluff that you can't find the plot. Don't drown your readers in adjectives. The reason it's gotten such a bad rep is probably because of Stephenie Meyer. I think that was the last straw for most people or something.

    But I like a bit of description. Not too much, mind you, but I like to know a bit about the things going on in the story. (Here comes a simile.) A story is like a mattress. Too much fluff and it's squishy and unsupported. Too little fluff and it's uncomfortable and you can't move around on it for fear of being poked. A good mattress is like a good story, and each writer has to find their own level of fluffiness-- way of description is a big part of the originality of a writer.

    So, Goldilocks, find your mattress before the Bears get home. Good luck.

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  • Diana
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    1. Descriptive passage don't have to be written with purple prose.

    2. I don't believe that there's anything inherently wrong with purple prose. It's wonderful to get lost in words, when language is used for its own sake.

    3. I think there are enough readers to be interested in all kinds of writing, including purple rose.

    4. The only times purple prose annoys me is when: (1) a writer uses it to compensate for a lack of talent; or (2) it takes away from or intrudes upon the other aspects of a story. It sounds like your writing is heavily focused on language rather than plot. If that's the case, that there's little plot and character development to interfere with, go for it.

    Just my opinion.

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  • 1 decade ago

    You have a skewed understanding of purple prose- it's not descriptive language, per se, it is overly descriptive language that doesn't add anything to the story. For example, if you spend time talking about how the keys feel under your character's fingers when your character plays piano, and you spend two paragraphs on it and use ornate language, this is purple prose. If you keep it minimal and relatable but descriptive, it is absolutely fine and encouraged. Plots are always a good thing to have, in my opinion, though...

    See Twilight if you want some great examples of purple prose. Bella spends a lot of time explaining worthless things, such as how a car engine sounds....

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    There is nothing wrong with giving descriptions that allow your reader to immense him or herself fully into the world you've created. But when you have pages describing something that should only take up one paragraph, or if you give descriptions that add nothing to the plot, then it is quite a waste of paper and boring to the reader. Keep it simple and sweet. I hope that was helpful.

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  • 1 decade ago

    I think it's because the average person no longer possesses the skill to craft and/or recognize a pontificated sentence.

    At some point in time, probably due to Earnest Hemmingway or someone of his caliber, war was declared on modifiers, and modern fiction was born.

    By all means, continue your Wilde-like style. Hopefully it will encourage the populous to buy a dictionary.

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