I dont understand academic writing – part 2

John pointed out to me yesterday that possibly I don’t understand academic writing because I don’t fully understand the discussed concepts yet. This cannot be excluded so, to check, I found a paper about storytelling. Storytelling is easy and something that I did quite a few times, I also read some books about how to write a novel and had a look at some online courses.

Unfortunately, reading a paper about storytelling wasn’t any easier. All the sentences were overly complicated and it was difficult to workout what they really meant. I have an example for you:

Wishes and desires contained within the story reveal an individual’s future intensions, framed by their experiences of the past.

Those are the problems I have with the above sentence:

1. I believe it’s not wishes and desires that reveal character’s intentions but their actions. Let’s say intension is to loose weight, wish is to avoid type 2 diabetes and action is going on a diet. Someone may be wishing but doing nothing, therefore their true intension is to keep things as they are.

2. Intensions are framed? I can actually see a physical frame with a Intensions painting in it as I read it. A few seconds later I realise that’s not what the author meant. But how can I know what he meant if I don’t know what intensions are?

3. The above takes me 30 minutes to reflect on. I came to a conclusion at some point it’s not the past that frames intentions but the future.

4. Finally I know: framed is just an expression and what author meant was that statements about the past are mixed up with statements about the future. That doesn’t make me feel much better because I now wonder why use language that would suggest those two are kept separate?

45 minutes later I finally move to the next sentence but I don’t read much more than that. I feel like I cannot make it.

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