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  1. #1
    "Everything in its place" fill's Avatar
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    Default ENTPs & Sensory Detail

    So how does this work? Or does it work at all?

    I'll explain: I've been put in an English class this semester. My professor wants me to write a descriptive essay with mainly sensory detail. The goal was four to five pages. I have one page. I suck at detail. So badly. I really don't think she'll buy me explaining MBTI, "Uh... look, if you saw my list of cognitive functions, you'd see Se and Si are the lowest, and... oh, I've received an F?"

    I've never had difficulty doing something in this way before because I almost feel incapable of doing it. I could hardly tell you what I did last week- I'm so focused on the present moment and the future, but I'll take very small bits of my past that I think I can learn from- but that's about all. I can't go on describing what has happened in great detail.

    How can I cope with this? Or pass this class?

    P.S. - This is me last night trying to write the paper:
    "Poor bastard. Wait 'till he sees the bats. "
    enneagram - 7/5/3

  2. #2
    Senior Member Shimmy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fill View Post
    How can I cope with this? Or pass this class?
    Click.

    On a more serious note, your skills can become better with practice. You may suck at it now, but if you just sit down and write the piece it'll be easier the next time you do something similar.
    (removed)

  3. #3
    *hmmms* theadoor's Avatar
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    Well it's not that bad. When I concentrate I can write some really good sensory essays because of my Ne, i just have to spend a lot of time on it. Don't expect it to come easy, but it's definitely not impossible. I usually receive A for that kind of tasks, but I must admit, it's usually short essays or stories 1-2 typed pages long.
    My advice, I'm totally not so naturally good at writing essays, but I usually get some pretty nice marks for them- here's my advice how I do it:
    1) at first write a plan of the structure, write down what you're gonna talk about in each paragraph
    2) if it's more like a description write down describing qualities
    3) then make at least 3 different ways (synonyms, personifications or metaphors) to write basically the same thing.
    4) write the text and insert the qualities.
    Oh yeah?

  4. #4
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    make shit up

  5. #5
    ThatGirl
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    Just let your mind wander like this...

    I was walking down the path. "Oh look! A flower."

    The flower is red and lavender with pointed petals. Upon closer examination I noticed the small insect located on the sprigs of pollen so delicately situated in the center.

    It stop and wonder. Here we see two forms of life coexisting in one form. Which is the supportive structure......


    Pretend your brain is a microscope. At each magnification zoom in one more layer. Shouldn't be hard.

  6. #6
    Head Pigeon Mad Hatter's Avatar
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    Use your Ne and try to find some metaphors/similies etc., make comparisons and stuff. You can make them quite elaborate i.e. fluff it up (which probably goes against your grain). - I guess some English teachers will love that (no matter how stupid it looks to you).
    TGs approach is quite good. Just try to find a structure (or rather a beginning - I think that's the hardest part), and the rest will more or less fall into place.
    What's the topic of your essay (or have you found one yet)?
    IN SERIO FATVITAS.

    -τὸ γὰρ γράμμα ἀποκτέννει, τὸ δὲ πνεῦμα ζῳοποιεῖ-

  7. #7
    Priestess Of Syrinx Katsuni's Avatar
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    Believe it or not, I used to be incredibly concise, to the point that it was ridiculously difficult to meet the requested length due to having details cut down to just the most important ones.

    Then I did alot of forum debating... people would ask for clarification on something that was obvious... but never read anything past the first post. So I'd have all these clarifications later on but noone would see it so it meant nothing.

    As such, over time, I grew more and more descriptive, adding in every possible conceivable answer to any question anyone could have, and then some. Yeu know how an entp's wandering mind can go just about anywhere... well I started writing all that down.

    Now, I can do quite alot.

    One thing I did once, which may help yeu more directly in this matter, was more of a joke of 'proof' that more detail sucks... I wrote several pages worth describing... someone walking through a door.

    The point was to prove that it's possible to waste that much space on something so simple. Try doing this, covering everything from the grain of the wood, the fact that a chip that looks like it was added during installation indicates a cheap install contractor, that the shiny doorknob looks like it was added within a few weeks ago, the sound of the doorbell, the dread of the person before the door opens, flashback of memory to why they don't want to be at that door, it opening, a vague descriptionless (important) of whot's on the other side, something either light and inviting, or dark and foreboding, it doesn't matter, just don't give away WHOT is on the other side just hint at it.

    Add all those sorts of details and yeu'll learn quickly how to pad an idea.

  8. #8
    not to be trusted miss fortune's Avatar
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    oooh... I enjoy using my senses! Smelling things, tasting things and touching things are near the top of my list of priorities

    I generally find, however, that I'm rather unable to describe these things in writing- though my 4 year long streak of writers block may have something to do with that

    I'd suggest keeping a notebook on you and when you experience things write down a few notes- or if you're like me and never remember to bring things with you, borrow a pen from someone and write on any surface!
    “Oh, we're always alright. You remember that. We happen to other people.” -Terry Pratchett

  9. #9
    "Everything in its place" fill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shimmy View Post
    On a more serious note, your skills can become better with practice. You may suck at it now, but if you just sit down and write the piece it'll be easier the next time you do something similar.
    That they will, but I feel I'm being rushed to the point where I can't learn these skills quickly enough to succeed.

    Quote Originally Posted by thisGuy View Post
    make shit up
    I was going to, but I'd rather be honest. I love cheating- but I also love challenges. Such is the dilemma of my life.

    Quote Originally Posted by ThatGirl View Post
    Pretend your brain is a microscope. At each magnification zoom in one more layer. Shouldn't be hard.
    I like this. I'll try to apply it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Avis View Post
    Use your Ne and try to find some metaphors/similies etc., make comparisons and stuff. You can make them quite elaborate i.e. fluff it up (which probably goes against your grain). - I guess some English teachers will love that (no matter how stupid it looks to you).
    Yeah this is what I usually do, but I can tell this isn't what she's looking for, and I feel I'd only be docked points for it; do I write a four page paper that's 75% bullshit or a one page paper 100% gospel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Katsuni View Post
    The point was to prove that it's possible to waste that much space on something so simple. Try doing this, covering everything from the grain of the wood, the fact that a chip that looks like it was added during installation indicates a cheap install contractor, that the shiny doorknob looks like it was added within a few weeks ago, the sound of the doorbell, the dread of the person before the door opens, flashback of memory to why they don't want to be at that door, it opening, a vague descriptionless (important) of whot's on the other side, something either light and inviting, or dark and foreboding, it doesn't matter, just don't give away WHOT is on the other side just hint at it.

    Add all those sorts of details and yeu'll learn quickly how to pad an idea.
    This is very helpful! I never really understood the process of turning minute detail into conclusions using Ne. I'm making lots of sense of this.

    Quote Originally Posted by whatever View Post
    oooh... I enjoy using my senses! Smelling things, tasting things and touching things are near the top of my list of priorities

    I generally find, however, that I'm rather unable to describe these things in writing- though my 4 year long streak of writers block may have something to do with that

    I'd suggest keeping a notebook on you and when you experience things write down a few notes- or if you're like me and never remember to bring things with you, borrow a pen from someone and write on any surface!
    Me too! I'm always jotting down conclusions and a metaphorical argument that leads to it; and I also have, like you do/did, a hard time explaining my senses on paper. I've never understood how to "put the reader in the moment." Even short stories I've written are very vague in describing their environment. For example, if a part in the book takes place in a plaza, I'll simply put, "So-and-so walked through the plaza" and leave the rest up to their imagination. To me, describing the sense details in a story impairs the objectivity of the material as the reader puts connotations through the senses. If I write, "As they sat in the room, the three men looked at Jon intimidatingly," this room has no personality, and the reader gives it such; however, if I write, "As they sat in the dark, dingy room, the three men looked at Jon in his intimidatingly," I feel I'm limiting the reader's imagination- or maybe I'm simply giving them a clearer picture. I can easily see how someone would completely disagree with me on this issue.
    "Poor bastard. Wait 'till he sees the bats. "
    enneagram - 7/5/3

  10. #10
    Senior Member the state i am in's Avatar
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    i have the same problem currently. as an Ni dom, how the fuck am i supposed to, rather than synthesizing the ideas i am interested in, focus on "telling a story" as if some pointless anecdote will become meaningful for me. context, context, context, right?

    we have to read all of these isfp spiritual writing books. and everyone seems to adore david sedaris. no thanks.

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