Archive for ‘Punctuation’

February 4, 2013

Reading on a Mission

by limebirdkate

My last post, Read to Write, discussed the importance of reading while a writer is working on a project. There were a few comments made about “mental editor” or “internal editor,” which spurred this post.

As a writer, it can be very difficult to read solely for pleasure. Writers are often reading books with an eye for structure, setting, plot and character development.  This is what I would call an occupational hazard.  In my case I can’t get through a book without searching for typos, grammar and punctuation mistakes. When I find a flaw I am disappointed and annoyed. I tsk-tsk as I move on, wary of more glaring errors.

This particular (annoying) habit of mine could be a result of having been a copyeditor. When I first took a job with a teeny-tiny publishing office, I trained myself to be vigilant for errant commas and apostrophes, misspellings, and poor sentence structure. I became so entrenched in my $8.oo an hour job that I took to the streets with my newfound death-defying editing skills. I would catch typos in menus and flyers and signs, point them out with ferocity and satisfaction, as though I’d caught miscreants lurking about town.

March 24, 2012

Comma ‘gain?

by limebirdmike

Commas… they can either make or break your writing.

The trap a lot of people fall into with commas is to assume there is a ‘hard and fast’ rule that governs their use. The truth is, in many respects, there isn’t. While in some situations (which we will look at later) a comma or lack of comma can change the meaning you’re trying to convey, in many others a comma is merely a tool to be used to alter the speed and the flow of your writing.

March 22, 2012

My Experience Of Residential Writing Workshops

by limebirdsally

Limebirdkate, aka the terrifyingly-named 4am writer (yes that’s a literally-derived nom de plume) recently wrote a really useful post on her personal blog talking about  writing workshops, focusing particularly on online workshops. It fired up some rusted-over memory nodes towards the back of my brain on a residential writing course I went on a few years ago run by the Arvon Foundation (oo, I’ve just seen their snazzy website – it was a little course book when I booked my course!) The Arvon Foundation is a charity that runs five-day residential creative writing courses in Britain, with each course focusing on a specific genre. I went on a creative writing for adults course down in Devon.

(Image from Arvon Foundation website)

February 1, 2012

A beginner’s guide to apostrophes

by limebirdmike

It’s fair to say the internet has been a blight on good grammar. Forums and social media sites are literally brimming with poorly used apostrophes, and one of my biggest bugbears is the mis-use of their, there, and they’re. For this week’s blog then, I thought I’d write something about apostrophes, and how to use them!


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