Word Fun

Prospective vs. Perspective Being a Texas girl, I’ve learned that most of my species – folks from Texas – talk like we have a mouth full of marbles. Consonances are slurred; ending letters are dropped; and short words are dragged out to infinity and beyond. But Texans are NOT alone in this enunciation battle. As I’ve traveled extensively through Southern states, I’ve crossed many a verbal sword with store clerks, waitresses, hotel receptionists, even roadside assist. Add masks to the talking mixture, and the language minefield explodes with confusion. HOWEVER, not all word snafus are a result of poor pronunciation. At times, it’s a simple matter of playing the game: what’s the right word? A […]

7 Steps to Editing Like a PROfessional!

Editing is part of every writer’s job. Finding the time, and more importantly, making that time count is how the PROfessionals edit. Read on for the 7 editing tricks to enhance your writing. 1) Find your editing groove. For some this is EARLY when eyes are the sharpest and focus is the clearest. For others their peak time might be mid-to-late afternoon. Caffeine kicks in, morning rush dies down and – again, this is about focus – the brain settles into a rhythm. I caution against late night editing. Eyes are slower from all the image bombardment of the day. Eagle eyes are needed for effective editing. If, however, evening is the ONLY quiet time […]

Snapping Photos?? Breathe LIFE into Writing . . .

I’m old enough that Kodak still means cameras to me. Instant camera was our phrase from the 60s & 70s. Of course, considering today’s technology, it’s ludicrous to think those were instant pictures. 1) First to film – The lucky owned a 35MM, which meant loading the camera was always a treat. Lining it up – perfectly – to catch the leading edge of the film reel (and hoping like crazy that you’d really accomplished that feat so you’d be taking pictures instead of just turning the hand crank). For the novice photo buff, it started with a Kodak Instamatic: a pop-and-click camera. 2) No do-overs — As you shot the roll of film, it […]

The Language Garden: The Apostrophe Hummingbird

I have been re-reading ‘Eats, Shoots & Leaves’ by Lynne Truss. Glutton for punishment? Hardly. Like the majority of authors, I constantly hone and refine my skills. There is no ‘quick grow’ method to sound writing. No short-cut or easy season. Study time, butt-in-chair effort to learn basic and advance grammar is still the most effective method for a good crop of sentences. As to EATS, SHOOTS, AND LEAVES: if you haven’t read Lynne’s witty take on grammar and its sad decline, you are in for a treat. She entertains and educates – no easy feat. If you’re new to writing, then best advice: learn the grammar rules. A past critique partner, albeit a brilliant […]

Don’t Bungle your Blogging (or Become a Better Blogger – Writer)

In my daily perusal – read – of a multitude of blog and websites, I’ve discovered some uh-oh moments. Despite the type of blog, the number of individuals involved with the blog, or the purpose of the writing, the mistakes exist. No Grammar Police hat worn here. But I will say that on-page mistakes threaten our reader’s pleasure. Good writing is hard work. More importantly, easy reading is harder work. GOOD GRAMMAR — Wait! Don’t stop reading yet. I know . . . I know . . .The word GRAMMAR should be issued in a whisper. Ears snap closed like a gator before his midnight snack. Patience, Padawan – this could be useful information. I’m […]

What you know and how to write it in an article . . .

Article writing 101 . . . actually, it’s more like pre-101, however, it’s been tremendous fun sharing a number of the writing lessons I’ve learned. Good writing is important for everyone — a point I’m constantly making to my kids. Whatever the career, whatever the emphasis, everyone needs to know how to communicate, and communicating through written word is crucial. Apparently, EZine magazine thinks it’s important, too, because they’ve accepted several of my articles regarding writing. They sent this link: ezinearticles for my Clear and Concise Writing. For those of you who don’t think you could write an article, consider all the things that you know how to do — there will be a lot! […]