Bad Character Habits in Wheel of Time

It’s time for an intervention to stop the bad habits of characters in The Wheel of Time.

There are a few bad habits that the characters in The Wheel of Time have that they don’t seem to be able to stop themselves from doing even after six books, so I think it might be time for an intervention:

  • Scrubbing their hands through their hair.
  • Knuckling their moustaches or their backs.
  • Gaping at anyone or anything.
  • Smoothing their skirts.
  • Sniffing.
  • Obsessing over the neckline of women’s dresses.

It’s sort of laughable to see these things in the seventh book. Here’s Rand scrubbing a hand through his hair again. Uh oh, Elayne’s sniffing again. And here are some women entering the scene. What kind of dresses are they wearing? Will their necklines be ‘swooping’ low or just ‘dipping’ low? Will there be an oval cutout?

On The Fires of Heaven

I finally finished The Fires of Heaven, the fifth book in the Wheel of Time series. I say “finally” because, compared to the three Hunger Games books, Fires of Heaven reads like an encyclopedia.

Apparently this is the book where most people gave up on the series, and I can certainly see why. It’s kind redundant at this point to say “half of the text could have been removed without any effect on the plot,” but it’s never been truer. Yes, yes, it’s all very rich and imaginative detail about the world. But in writing, story is king.

There are three main storylines in this book: 1) Rand leaving the waste with his Aiel horde, 2) Nynaeve and Elayne returning from Tanchico, and 3) Siuan Sanche, the former Amerlyn Seat, searching for the exiled Blue Ajah from the Tower.

Perrin is not in the book at all, which sucks for me because he’s the only one among the ta’veren that I don’t constantly feel like smacking upside the head.

[spoiler] Apparently each one of these books is basically about Rand defeating another one of the Forsaken. Most of this book, Rand talks about Sammael as his adversary, but in the end Jordan pulled a switch-a-roo and he actually went after Rahvin, who is Gaebril, the guy who ensorceled Queen Morgase. Everyone thinks Morgase is dead, but she just went underground.

So Morraine finally dies in this book, something that I’ve been expecting to happen for quite some time, considering how often she talks about her own demise with Lan. And in this book in particular, her behavior radically changes in a way that telegraphs both her imminent death and the fact that she knows it’s coming soon. On the plus side, she took Lanfear with her, which was a bit of a surprise to me. Of course, we never saw the bodies, so I have to assume they aren’t really dead, and they’ll be back in another book. Because everyone knows that in fiction, if there’s no body, or if we didn’t actually see them die, they aren’t dead.

I have to admit I wasn’t sad to see Morraine go. She has had no significant role in these books since the first one (besides being a constant irritant, that is).

Nothing new to report with Nynaeve or Elayne, except that their constant cat-fighting is getting very, very old. Nynaeve somehow managed to help Rand defeat Rahvin in the end through the dream world thingy, but I’m not precisely sure how that happened. Jordan has a way of describing scenery and history in excruciating detail, but he is not great at writing clear action scenes. [/spoiler]

Hunger Games Descriptions

As I’m reading the Hunger Games trilogy (I’m on the last book now), I am trying to analyze why it is so popular and addictive. The story is okay, the characters are okay, the setting is okay, but somehow it adds up to something greater than the sum of its parts. Maybe it’s all marketing.

One thing I noticed just now, which contributes to the fast-paced, concise text: There are hardly any descriptions of the settings. Most of it must be filled in by the reader’s imagination. As an example, from Chapter 6 of Mockingjay:

…the doors open on the Hangar.

“Oh,” I let out involuntarily at the sight of the fleet. Row after row of different kinds of hovercraft.

That’s it. That’s literally the entire description of what in my mind must be a giant facility with tons of unfamiliar and interesting stuff to look at and describe. (In the movie version, I’m sure it will be an elaborate CG-enhanced shot that the characters will be walking through.) Collins only writes a hint of where the characters are. But somehow it’s enough to get us from scene A to scene B. And because we’re really only interested in finding out what happens next, we don’t really care.

Maybe lack of description is a “feature” of Young Adult books. I suppose I’ll have to suck it up and read some other YA books to find out.

Anyway, for me, as a person who constantly worries that I’m not writing enough description, it’s a big relief to know that a hit book doesn’t require much.

P.S. “I let out involuntarily?” Really?

Hunger Games Dialog Tags

One thing I forgot to mention about The Hunger Games: The dialog tags. It’s funny the things you notice when you’re an aspiring writer. Suzanne Collins uses the “X said” model when Katniss says something, but uses the “said X” model when other people speak. Like this:

“I’m leaving,” I say.

“You can’t,” says John.

But then, if she uses a pronoun, she goes back to the “X said” model. (Obviously, because “says he” would be dumb.)

“John, I’m leaving,” I say.

“You can’t,” he says.

And just to make it interesting, she occasionally switches it up and does this:

“I’m going,” I say.

“You can’t,” John says.

Maybe the “said X” model is a young adult thing. I’m listening to Partials by Dan Wells (which is another dystopian young adult science fiction-ish book, coincidentally, *wink* *nudge*), and all of his dialog tags are “said X,” too.

On The Hunger Games

I finally get around to reading Hunger Games. (See what I did there?) I think it’s not terrible. It’s a decent action adventure yarn, but it’s not very deep, which I suppose is normal for a young adult book. It has a Dan Brown sort of flavor to it. I would have given it three stars out of five (“I liked it”) on GoodReads, except I did not like the ending, so I went back down to two stars (“it was ok”).

It takes me some time to get used to the first person, present tense writing. It’s not my favorite style. Later I realize there is a certain cadence to the writing. The sentences tend to be the same length. The sentences tend to be constructed the same way. All of the sentences end on a down beat. All of the sentences end with a noun. It hypnotizes the reader into reading more. Every chapter ends in a cliffhanger sentence. The reader is yanked, kicking and screaming, into reading the next chapter almost every time. The book ends on one of those cliffhanger sentences, and it really irritates me because I don’t want to get the second book (unless I see it on sale, as I did the first book). [I borrowed it with Amazon Prime for free!]

In the first third of the book, we are introduced to Katniss Everdeen and this dystopian world of the future, ruled by the Capitol, which I assume we are supposed to think is scarily similar to our own media-obsessed America. While there is a kernel of truth in it, I have a hard time suspending disbelief because I can’t see how this Panem society could ever develop or sustain itself, and we are not told much about the historical details of this place. It would have been much better if Panem existed in an alternate world, instead of trying to explain how it evolved out of modern day America. I surmise that young adults don’t care about that stuff, so I let it go.

The book gets considerably better when we start the actual Hunger Games, where we revert to a straight-up action suspense thriller story, which is pretty cool. Basically they stick Kat and twenty-three other kids (twelve to eighteen) in the wilderness and make them fight to the death. Who doesn’t like stories of people fighting to the death? I can see this part making a good movie. We’re supposed to be horrified about the deaths of these kids, but they don’t act like kids so it’s okay. There are no real surprises here. Kat makes relatively smart decisions (except a few bone-headed ones which she gets away with). Plot obstacles are overcome by helpful items floating down from the sky on parachutes (literally). It gets a little mushy at one point, in a young adult sort of way. What I assume was supposed to be a shocking twist could be seen a mile away. The final confrontation between the last three tributes feels a little weird and contrived and somewhat unsatisfactory, because they really didn’t confront each other.

On reflection, there was a lot of potential for agonizing conflict left on the table in the arena. At no point is Kat faced with having to kill someone that she likes, or even someone who is likable, so she has no moral dilemmas to overcome. The bad guys are clearly bad guys without any souls or personality, so we don’t mind them dying. (Some of them literally have no names.)

After she survives the games (spoiler alert: Kat survives), I want her to lead these districts in overthrowing the Capitol. Because, really, I think 75 years of these games is enough time for someone to figure out how to overthrow this circus of a government, don’t you? At the very least, Kat should grab her family and frickin’ leave town. There’s a bazillion square miles of area in North America to hide in. I assume this kind o thing is what the other two books are about (what else is there to do?), but the prospect of wading through Kat’s feelings about these two dudes to get to that conclusion is a bit revolting. [I read that there is another arena in the second book, so I’m a lot more interested in reading it now.]

So in short, start with The Lottery, add The Running Man and a touch of the obligatory young adult teen love triangle, and you’ve got the pop culture phenomenon known as The Hunger Games.

The Fires of Heaven, A Rant On Dense Characters

I’ve read ten chapters of The Fires of Heaven, the fifth book in the Wheel of Time series. In Robert Jordan’s world, ten chapters is about 205 pages. I really have a love/hate relationship with these books. Sometimes they are brilliant. Other times they make you want to throw the book (aka. Kindle device) at the wall. And it’s almost never in the middle. It’s usually one of those two extremes.

I get that sometimes the characters aren’t supposed to pick up on things that the reader sees, because we, the reader, have the benefit of seeing everyone’s point of view. But holy crap sometimes Jordan’s characters are incredibly dense. I mean, this thing with Aviendha and Rand is driving me crazy. Nobody could possibly be as blind as Rand. Maybe I could let that slide because in these books, men and women aren’t supposed to understand each other. (Which I’m getting a bit tired of, actually.) But Egwene! What is her excuse? Even she is blind to what is going on. As far back as the middle of the last book, I thought Aviendha had a thing for Rand, and it wasn’t all that subtle then. But in this book the reason for Aviendha’s odd behavior is so obvious it might as well be on neon signs for everyone to see. (It’s so obvious that I’m suspicious that Jordan is trying to trick me, and he will reveal something entirely different that’s going on.)

My other problem with this book is that so far, it’s not clear what the goals for the book are. That is, what are the problems that our heros need to overcome? In the first book, we were trying to get to the Eye of the World. In the second book, we were trying to recover the Horn of Valere. In the third book, we were all running toward Tear and the Sword of Callandor. In the fourth book, the storylines diverged. Perrin, at least, had a clear goal of saving Emond’s Field. Nynaeve and Elayne had a goal of finding Dark Sisters in Tanchico. Rand hung out with the Aiel, though it was never clear to me why. (I did not care for Rand’s part in that book. I would have been just fine if the enter rest of the series did like the third book and simply left him out.)

After 10 chapters (I remind you, that is 205 pages), the path and the destination are not clear at all. I stopped reading The Fifth Sorceress because I didn’t see a plot in the first 200 pages. All I can tell is that Rand has just started moving his Aiel army into Shienar. Why? Don’t have a clue. Rand’s keeping it all secret, and he’s acting like, well, like Rand always does: An idiot. I am always very happy when the Rand chapters end. It’s tempting to literally just click the Go To Next Chapter button when I see Rand’s name.

Nynaeve and Elayne, I think, are trying to go back to Tear. At least that’s the general direction they are heading on the map, except they keep saying they want to return to Tar Valon, which is in a whole different direction. I guess they are going to take a boat up the river? So I’m not really clear where they are going or why. I guess they are heading back to get new orders. (Boy are they going to be in for a surprise if they actually reach Tar Valon in this book.)

And speaking of dense characters, do not get me started on Nynaeve and Elayne just up and drinking strange tea made by strangers acting strangely in a strange town. From now on, whenever they start talking indignantly about how insulted they are that the stupid men (Juilin and Thom) are with them and they don’t need any help from them and they’d be better off without them, they should get a good thumping about the head and shoulders, because the men totally saved them from their own stupidity.

Okay, I’ll go back to reading now. :)

On The Fifth Sorceress

I half-heartedly read the first five chapters of The Fifth Sorceress by Robert Newcomb (2002), knowing it had received generally unfavorable reviews from fans of the epic fantasy genre. (It has an Amazon rating of like 2.25 stars, which is pretty bad for a book from a major publisher.) Five chapters might not sound like much, but the chapters in this book are miles long. Five chapters works out to 149 pages or 25% of the book.

You might think that within 149 pages, some sort of exciting plot would begin, but you would be wrong. It’s all setup and backstory. The hero’s journey is nowhere to be found, so it did not take me long to start skimming. (By skimming, I mean I read the first sentence of every paragraph, or skipped everything but dialog.) There is a lot of exposition at the beginning of this book, and thus very little action.

Unlike Wizard’s First Rule, this book never even came close to growing on me. So what lessons did I learn from examining this book?

In late, out early. You guessed it, some kind of action or movement should begin pretty early in the book, even in the exposition-heavy epic fantasy genre. (I kind of knew this already, actually.) This is called the “in-late, out-early” theory of scene development. It’s not fun to read people sitting around talking (or worse, thinking) about the history of the world and the war that happened three hundred years ago … right at the beginning. It’s like reading the author’s worldbuilding notes. That information should be doled out as needed while the characters are fighting orcs or walking to Mordor.

Keep chapters on the short side. I prefer shorter chapters. Mainly because sometimes I just want to read a little bit, and I don’t like to stop unless I’m at a chapter break. With long chapters, I get annoyed because I have to stop in mid-thought. Also, if the long chapter is mostly exposition, I start thinking something like, “Oh God will this chapter ever end?”

Avoid childishly salacious characters. I’m pretty sure the oversexualized sorceress is a cliche now. Just don’t do it. But if you are going to do it, definitely don’t do five of them, where the only distinguishing feature between them is the color of their hair. And at least pretend they have some subtlety to their amorous ways. Epic fantasies aren’t comic books.

Flaws, flaws, flaws. Again, the best characters have some kind of flaw. Everyone can’t be awesome at everything, or you have to depend completely on your setting and plot. Characters need crippling weaknesses that make them suffer as if they were dragged through the pits of hell … just to make a ham sandwich. (And no, Prince Tristan, bedding half the women in the land instead of picking a wife is not a suitable flaw.)

Stick to first person or third person limited. Newcomb made an odd perspective choice. It’s sort of like third person limited, except we get to hear the thoughts of everyone in the scene. Yet it doesn’t go quite as far as omniscent voice, because the narrator is not an identifiable character. It does not come across well, in my opinion. UPDATE 4/5: I have since learned (from Writing Excuses) that this is an odd form of omniscient viewpoint. It’s still weird.

On Kushiel’s Dart

In my continuing look at other modern fantasy books and authors, I landed on Kushiel’s Dart by Jacqueline Carey (2002). It consistently ranks high in top ten “best fantasy” lists.

From this book I’ve learned:

  • The “inciting incident” should be early in the book.
  • The characters need to struggle early in the book.
  • A beautiful setting isn’t enough to make a good book without the above.
  • (Also, just now I learned that my WP Theme doesn’t do bullets for crap.)

Allow me to explain. Carey’s prose is beautiful. The world of Terre D’Ange, an alternate history version of Renaissance France, is complex, lavish, and exotic. It reminds me a lot of Dune in its … I don’t know … what’s the word? Grandiosity? Splendor? Otherworldliness?

That being said, I’m stopping after chapter 25, page 242 (of 901 — it’s big) for a number of reasons:

I think I’ve got the “flavor” of the book and the author’s style, which, as I said, is beautiful, and something I could never recreate in a million years of trying.

Kushiel’s Dart is not within the realm of fantasy that I prefer. It’s more of an alternate history fantasy, whereas I’m more fond of the kind of fantasy where impossible stuff can happen. I can like alternate history, but not without a compelling plot and characters (see below).

Politics is a major driving force in Kushiel’s Dart, but it is simply too complex for me to keep track of it all. Adding to that, the names are very difficult to keep straight, as they are all French and they all look the same to my uncultured American eyes. (And, reading on a Kindle, it’s impossible to flip to the glossary — somebody needs to solve that problem.)

But mainly, unfortunately, I can’t discern the plot. I don’t know what anyone’s goals or motivations are. For example: Delauney is a mysterious character with a mysterious past, but since he’s also a major character, it would be nice to have some idea of why he has Phedre and Alcuin gathering information for him. Is it for revenge? Personal gain? A daring bid to become king? It’s anybody’s guess. Phedre (the narrator) doesn’t know, so unfortunately I don’t know either. The book unfolds a lot like an autobiography: Phedre telling her life story. Albeit she tells it in a wonderful voice (you know how you can listen to some people talk all day? They have that certain quality of tone or inflection or charisma that is just pleasant to listen to? That’s what the narrator’s voice in this book is like), but still, there’s a frustrating lack of substance. In the first 242 pages, Phedre herself doesn’t seem to have any motivations except to “love as thou wilt.” I suppose that’s a fine life goal, but it lacks a narrative arc. The book is obviously building toward something but I can’t even guess what it might be. (Okay, well, I can guess it will probably be a confrontation.)

The characters also suffer a bit from a lack of flaws or internal struggles that affect the plot. Everyone seems to be in the place they want to be in their life (except Alcuin, but we only see his story tangentially). Nobody seems to be striving to overcome any obstacles — certainly not Phedre, the narrator. She is thusfar just a passive observer of a bunch of inexplicable political machinations by Delauney. It’s as if the “inciting incident” of the hero’s journey hasn’t happened yet and all we’re seeing is backstory. I suppose it has to happen later in the book, but surely it should be somewhere within the first 242 pages? (With my luck, I’m probably stopping right before it happens.)

P.S. Okay let’s just put this out there. If you’re squeamish about sex, you might want to avoid this book. It’s basically a first-person autobiography of a courtesan in Terre D’Ange, a world where instead of the repressive Catholic Church, a polar opposite Church of Elua develops, which teaches us to “love as thou wilt.” Sex is not only celebrated, it’s part of the religion. The narrator is a courtesan with a special gift for, well, enjoying pain. Yeah, like from whips and stuff. It’s explicit, but I didn’t think it was graphic or gratuitous, if that makes any sense. (At least in the first 242 pages — there was plenty of book left to ramp it up.)

Wizard’s First Rule, Part Two

Well, I don’t know how Goodkind did it (which makes it a good topic for study, I guess), but somehow Wizard’s First Rule crawled up under my skin and embedded itself there. It kept getting better and better and in the end, I am shocked to say that I had a hard time putting it down and enjoyed it.

Why? I think because it had a lot of “heart.” The characters won me over. First Kahlan, then I even started rooting for Richard in the end. Though I must admit I thought the final solution was a bit cheesy (spoiler alert: love conquers all). I guess the whole book was cheesy too. It’s basically Romeo and Juliet where the tragic ending is narrowly averted. It’s a fairy tale, with a (spoiler alert) fairy tale ending.

And on the plus side, it has an ending. There’s no need to read the next book (although I put it on my wish list).

Here’s the caveat: The book does take a while to get rolling. I stopped reading around Chapter 18, when Richard and Kahlan enter the Boundary (somewhere around 30% through). At that point, the only interesting question to me was, “what’s the deal with Kahlan?” But it seemed pretty clear that Goodkind was going to drag that out through the whole book, which was getting annoying.

So, thinking I was done, I went to read some book reviews, and they all kept saying how much sex and violence there was in the book. That blew my mind, because for the first 18 chapters, Wizard’s First Rule is about as softball, G-rated, goody-twoshoes as you can get (like I said, it’s a fairy tale!). So, if only to see what all the fuss was about, I kept reading (actually, er, skimming).

The first instance of “graphic violence” occurs in Chapter 21, p. 210. It’s not really that bad. It’s more of the cartoonish, over-the-top sort of violence you see in, for example, Kill Bill. It almost makes you want to laugh more than cringe. He takes a single moment in time, ratchets up the film speed so it’s in super slow motion, and describes everything in detail. It was a fairly important moment, so I didn’t have a problem with it.

Then the unthinkable happened. Somewhere within Chapters 25 through 28 (the trials and tribulations with the Mud People) is when I first thought to myself, “wow, I think I kind of like this book.” (This is also where the first “sex stuff” happens, which was also PG-13 at worst.) It was a suspenseful time in the book, and one thing Goodkind can do is build suspense. And looking back at it now, I realize it was also the area where the writing switched from Richard’s POV to Kahlan’s POV, which could well have had a lot to do with it. IMO, Kahlan is a way more compelling character than Richard.

Starting in Chapter 29, we are introduced to a young orphan girl named Rachel, who is an adorable kid who could melt the heart of a sociopathic serial killer. She’s a side character on an almost entirely self-contained side adventure. Again, it was pretty suspenseful because I was completely sure that there was no way this sweet, innocent little child would be able to escape the evil clutches of the Bad Queen. But (spoiler alert) being a fairy tale and all, she did.

The infamous “torture porn” (a term used to describe movies like Saw) starts in chapter 41. But instead of being grisly and disturbing like I was led to believe, it was actually one of the most emotionally compelling parts of the book. I think that was the first time I started caring about Richard, and my hat is off to Goodkind for somehow making us genuinely care about his Mord-Sith captor Denna (spoiler alert: Richard gets captured).

And for what it’s worth, I didn’t think it was all that excessively graphic. If your idea of epic fantasy ends at Lord of the Rings, then yeah it would probably be pretty shocking. But it could have been much, much worse… a lot of really graphic details were missing. There were “hints” but almost nothing really shown “on screen.” It was more psychological torture in a way; there was a lot of dialog.

And in defense of the length of it: I think it was necessary to effectively build Denna as a two-dimensional character, and Richard’s relationship with her. One could argue whether a side character needed that level of characterization, I suppose, but it would have been a pretty boring part of the book otherwise.

On Wizard’s First Rule

In catching up on the fantasy genre, I wanted to read popular books that were considered good, and popular books that were considered bad. So now I’m reading Wizard’s First Rule by Terry Goodkind, the first in the Sword of Truth series, which for some reason is often seen as the “rival” to Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series. Goodkind is a very devisive writer. People seem to either love him or hate him, which I suppose, is exactly the reception that Robert Jordan gets. Usually people like one or the other, but rarely both.

I have to admit that I started Wizard’s First Rule expecting it to be bad. And, to be honest, the first 18 chapters supported this preconception. But if you make it to chapter 19, the book suddenly becomes pretty compelling. At that point, Goodkind starts building suspense very well, and he is able to communicate a lot of emotional resonance.

For my purposes, it doesn’t really matter whether the book is good or bad. As an aspiring writer trying to learn from established writers, I’m just analyzing the writing, character, setting, and plot. Here are the lessons I’ve learned from Goodkind so far.

Realism is important to an adult audience. I want to be a writer that pays at least some attention to details. Goodkind has said Sword of Truth isn’t really in the fantasy genre, and now I think I understand why. It’s really more of a fairy tale or soap opera than a typical epic fantasy. But I think adult fantasy audiences today require a little more realism. Not necessarily a historical fiction level of realism, but enough to let the reader know that the author has at least given some thought to how a person with medieval technology might light a candle in their tent at night while it’s raining too much to build a fire (see Wizard’s First Rule Chapter 15, p. 150).

Character flaws are vitally important. I want my characters to have flaws. This is pretty self-evident, but Sword of Truth really illustrates the point. In the first eighteen chapters, none of the characters have any flaws. They are all polite, kind to one another, friendly, eager to help, etc. None of them are missing an arm (okay, one is missing a foot), or scarred by their childhood, or tempted by drink, or afraid of spiders, or addicted to crystal meth, or anything like that. The biggest character flaw in Richard is that he’s afraid of getting too angry. (This is not to say the characters don’t have secrets; they have plenty of those.) Addendum: The reader should know the character flaws early in the story. As it turns out, Kahlan has an epic, tragic flaw which is pretty mind-blowing when you get to it, and makes you wonder how a person could possibly live with such a crushing weight on their soul, but you have to wait until Chapter 34 to fully get it.

Magic should have a cost and consequences. I want my magic-users to suffer for their art. Magic is “mysterious” in Sword of Truth in the sense that there is no logical, scientific explanation for it, which is my preference, but it goes too far into the all-powerful fairy tale snap-your-fingers-and-stuff-happens magic. That is, when Zedd the wizard magically holds up a bridge so it doesn’t collapse while they cross, seemingly with just a thought, one has to wonder why the wizard doesn’t use that levitation ability to do other more practical things, like float around so he doesn’t need a horse, or keep all his belongings suspended in the air around him instead of putting them in a backpack, or hell, frickin’ pick up his whole house and carry it with him.

Characters should act like normal humans. I want my characters to behave like ordinary people, not melodramatic stage actors. Most of the characters in Sword of Truth suffer from severe bipolar disorder which manifests as violent mood swings and dramatic outbursts. For example, when a character is irritated by something in a conversation, he might jump to his feet and get angry, or pound his fist on the table at odd moments. I’ve never known a person to “jump to his feet” in reaction to a conversation. It just doesn’t ring true.

Strong emotion loses its impact when overdone. I think that when the characters laugh or cry at the drop of a hat, the emotional impact of what they’re saying or doing starts to diminish over time. Richard and Kahlan certainly have reason to be crying all the time, but when it’s a constant, steady stream, chapter after chapter, it makes the characters seem a bit unstable.

One other amusing observation: All writers and especially new writers tend to repeat a phrase a lot (myself included). Wizard’s First Rule is apparently Goodkind’s debut book, and he is no exception to the rule. The most-repeated phrase so far is: “without emotion” or some variation thereof. “He showed no emotion” or “he betrayed no hint of emotion” or “he said without emotion.” Search for the word “emotion” and it comes up quite a lot.