Exercises in style

The same story written in different styles

The Original Story:

The 8:08 train to London stopped at the platform under a wintry sky. A woman, who was dressed in a beige overcoat and black boots, got onboard and moved quickly to find a seat. Upon sitting down she was confronted by a man, with curly hair, who was holding her scarf that she had dropped. She blushed a little, said thank you. He lingered, it seemed like he had wanted to say something, but didn’t and walked off. The next morning they were seen exchanging smiles.

The Exercises in Style

I have written 75 variations on this story so far (as of September 2018). Below is a sample of 20 of them.

01 Retrograde

They exchanged smiles. The day before the woman had blushed as a man, with curly hair, lingered while returning her scarf that she had dropped. She hadn’t noticed it fall as in her beige coat and black boots she quickly got on board, under a wintry sky, the 8:08 train to London.

02 Passive

The 8:08 train to London was brought to a stop at the platform under a sky that had been made to look wintry. It was boarded by a woman. She was dressed in a beige overcoat and black boots. Once onboard a seat was quickly found and gravity was then used by her, to sit down. She was then confronted by a man with curly hair who had been moved to pick up her scarf that had been dropped by her not a moment earlier. Her face, as the scarf was given back, was turned a shade of red by her inhibitions and then thanks were duly offered. He was held in a moment of indecision before his legs were used to walk off. The next morning they were seen exchanging smiles.

03 Metaphorical

Soon after dawn, under a sheet of cold iron, a brown female rat squeezed into a toilet roll with others of its plague bound for the sprawling metropolis. When snug, the rat was opposed by another of the plague. This one, a male with a coiled tail was returning her neck wrap, which she had unknowingly abandoned. Her face, a sudden soft rose left him stuck in the mud, on mute, before he hopped off. 1335 minutes later, two motionless lighthouses were observed beaming at each other.

04 Sonnet

Was eight past eight when came the morning train
As under wintry skies onboard she went
Black boots beige coat played out the so mundane
But this was no run of the mill ascent
For as she got onboard her scarf so fell
without her knowing it was then in hand
A man had picked it up and just as well
For now he went to her and made his stand
Returning it to where she had sat down
A blush, a smile, thank you was sent his way
He stood, quite still and felt much like a clown
Could not utter a word as off he made
When next they met upon their morning trials
They saw each others eyes and traded smiles

05 No Letter E

That 8:08 morning train to London hung about on platform four; looking up you could spot a cold, wintry sky. This woman, who was sporting a brown coat and black boots, got onboard and ran quickly to find a spot to sit down. Upon sitting down, this guy, with curly hair, stood holding a scarf that this woman had lost without knowing. With a slight crimson glow, said woman said thank you. But this guy stuck around a bit, possibly hoping to say a word or two but didn’t and swiftly split. That following day: both smiling on platform.

06 The Letter E in Every Word

The eight-minutes-gone-eight passenger vehicle, direction ‘the smoke’, stopped beside the elevated concrete under grey winter skies. One female, wearing her beige overcoat over darkened footwear, embarked before heading speedily seatwards. While resting her backside, one male, whose hairstyle coiled, approached her. He held her neckwear she’d dropped unaware moments before. She blushed somewhat, offered her gratitude. He lingered, seemed like he wanted some conversation, however, he maintained silence before stepping aside. The next daybreak they were seen exchanging smiles.

07 E is the only vowel

The wheels rested by grey cement nether grey sky.
She, well dressed, trendy, entered then settled.
When there, he emerged, her neck element, recently descended, presented.
She went red, expressed cheer.
He seemed reserved, then left.
When they next met, they expressed glee.

08 Pilish

Pilish is a style of writing in which the lengths of consecutive words match the digits of the number π (pi)

It’s a grey, a bleak firmament so placed above.
The train trundles:
And so the commuter, lady, boards in winter wear
And she reclines,
sat on seating available there.
He suddenly, standing, with a misplaced garment,
a curled hairstyle; she reddening, gratified
her garment found!
A pause, dawdling so, gentleman waiting
then wandering away very quiet.
Following on,
the morning repeated,
a shared look:

09 Cockney Rhyming Slang

The day’s a-dawning hail and rain to London stopped at the platform under a wintry apple pie. A Gooseberry Puddin’, who was dressed in a beige weasel and stoat and black daisy roots, got onboard and moved her bacon and eggs quickly to find a tony blair to park her myleen klasse. Upon sitting down she was confronted by a heap of coke, with curly barnet fair on his loaf of bread, who was holding her centre half that she had dropped. Her once a weeks turned red and she said tom hanks. He lingered, it seemed like he had wanted to rabbit and pork, but didn’t and ball of chalked off. The next day’s a-dawning they took a butchers hook at each other and exchanged roof tiles. Sorted mate.

10 Sijo

The grey sky, reflecting her day
the routine, the must find a seat
But then him, out of the blue
returned part of her, he couldn’t speak
the next day, the sun came out
the world sings, when we smile

11 Common Words

Words taken from the OED website: 100 most common words. Only these words used, verbs have been conjugated.

It is a new day. People are just up and about because they work. She is there and she is well. Then it is there and she gets on to it first because she can. Then she looks and she sees him, she sees him just there. He has it and he gives it back to her. She is good. She thinks. But he wants to say.. but he doesn’t and then he goes. The day after. They look, they see and they are good.

12 Snowball

In each line there is an extra letter. First line one letter, second line two letters and so on.

it is
as the
waited to
let people
board under
wintry skies.
A woman who was
in work garb got
on and obtained a
place to sit. After
sitting she was met
by a man who had curly
hair and had found her
fallen scarf which she
had dropped. As he gave it
back she blushed and said
thanks. The man dawdled for
a bit before walking off. The
next day they sent out smiles
in the direction of each other

13 One Syllable Words

It was just past eight of the hour and the sky was grey as the train came to a halt. A girl, who wore a beige coat and black boots, got on the train and with haste found a seat. As she sat down she was met by a guy with curls in his hair, who held her scarf that he had seen fall as she got on the train. Her face went quite red as she said thanks. He stood for a while but said not a word and then he went off. The next day their eyes met with a smile.

14 Alliteration

The sunrise city service stopped at the station under a silvery sky. A woman, who was wearing an off-white wardrobe with waders, wormed her way in and went with whip to where waited a window seat. Simultaneous to sitting on said seat she was suited by a swain with spirally strands who sent back her scarf she seemed to have scattered southwards. Beauty blushed a bit, but blessed the beau. He lingered, longing then lurched off. The subsequent sunrise they were seen sending smiles.

15 The Letter C

Cold clouds covered creation.
City compelled carriages ceased.
Cream-clad chick climbed carriage-wards covering chair.
Curly-cut chap comes clutching clothing, cream-clad chick conceded.
Crimson cheeked chick conveys credit.
Chap’s chops closed; can’t converse.
Changes cold condition: canters.
Consequent commute chap casts contentment concerning chick, chick correspondingly casts contentment concerning chap.

16 Pangram

A Pangram is a sentence that contains every letter of the alphabet.

Upon the train, a snazzy female gave thanks and blushed as her scarf was quickly returned by a man who lingered but said not a jot before making his exit.

The next daybreak, they quietly exchanged smiles, amid the everyday waltz and jostle of the morning platform.

17 Gastronomical

It was cold enough to freeze your buns off as the gravy train to the salt mines stopped to ingest some sardines. One sardine, who was off to bring home the bacon, had good taste in clothing and was souped up in a potato skin jacket and black liquorice boots as she hopped into the tin before you could say sushi. Upon slipping down she was confronted by a scrumptious sardine with curly fries who was holding her bacon wrap that she had dropped. She went as red as a beet as she digested the situation and offered grace. He lingered like a fish out of water, but something had his tongue so he moved off awkwardly like a rolling lemon. The next morning they exchanged watermelon slices. Could these slices bear fruit? There’s food for thought.

18 Yes and, yes but

A: It was 8:08 in the morning.
B: Yes and the sky was wintry.
A: Yes and a train stopped at the platform.
B: Yes and a woman got onboard.
A: Yes and she was wearing a beige overcoat and black boots.
B: Yes and she found a seat.
A: Yes but she dropped her scarf
B: Yes but a man picked it up
A: Yes and he had curly hair.
B: Yes and he gave it back.
A: Yes and she blushed and said thank you.
B: Yes and he lingered.
A: Yes but he didn’t say anything and walked off.
B: Yes but the next morning they were seen exchanging smiles.

19 Hyperbole

For the millionth time, in rolled the 8:08 train to London under a sky so wintry the clouds had frozen. The most beautiful woman in the world, who was wearing the finest beige overcoat and boots as black as flocks of ravens got onboard and like lightning found a seat. Once sat down the most handsome man in the world, who had like the most curly hair ever, returned her scarf that she had dropped. Dying of embarrassment she said thank you. He stood there for eternity, what seemed like forever as the world and his wife watched on. But he didn’t say anything and at the speed of light, he left.

The next morning they exchanged mile wide smiles.

Now I’ve seen everything.

20 Interjections

Ugh! The sky is wintry.
Oh! The 8:08 train is on time!
Ooh-la-la! A woman, dressed in a beige overcoat and black boots, is getting on board.
Yipee! She’s found a seat.
Whoa! Who is this guy with curly hair standing in front of her now?
Ah! He is holding her scarf!
She had dropped it without realising. Oops!
Voila! He hands it back. Bravo!
My word! She’s blushing as she says thanks.
Uh Oh! Now he’s lingering there.
But he’s not saying anything. Oh no!
And now he’s wandered off. Oh well. So long! Adios!

Awww! But the next day they exchange smiles.