Thursday, February 12, 2009

The Words of Sounds (1) - Powers

I've noticed that fiction writers seldom spend a lot of extra words describing sounds, so I'm trying to pay more attention, and share the occasional worthy (at least in my estimation) passages. Suggestions welcome, and thanks in advance.

The Words of Sounds #1 - The Echo Maker, by Richard Powers (pg. 166)

"He stopped at the far end of the MotoRest parking lot, closed his filmy eyes, and listened.

The songs came on, mathematical, melodious, their elaborate patterns slowly mutating. Some were as singable as any human tune. He counted, sensitizing to the calls that played off one another, each a solo against a mass chorus. He lost count after a dozen, unsure where to lump and where to split. Every complex riff was identifiable, although Weber could identify none. Softer, in the middle distance, he heard the shush of cars along Interstate 80 whooshing like sprung balloons."

In this case, Weber is a writer (about neurological disorders / consciousness) from New York who has just spent a sleepless night in the middle of Nebraska (where he traveled to investigate a man with a brain injury) and is about to embark upon the streets of a small town at dawn.

[Sensitizing is my new favorite verb.]

No comments: