Be a Rebel…Break the Rules – by Alicia Dean

I have received a number of submissions over the years where the authors tried very hard to follow the ‘rules of writing.’ They tried so hard, in fact, that their stories were stiff and poorly written. I’m guessing it was the work of well meaning critique partners and overzealous contest judges. Don’t get me wrong, Read more about Be a Rebel…Break the Rules – by Alicia Dean[…]

2013 – a year for discoveries

Well, it’s New Year’s Eve, the last day of the calendar year. I have to apologize for being absent the last few weeks. I figured everyone was too busy shopping and baking and partying and preparing for the end of the world to read my thoughts about writing and editing. (Long pause.) Actually, I just Read more about 2013 – a year for discoveries[…]

Beta readers ~ be careful what you ask for!

Some of you might know that I write commercial fiction under a pseudonym. As a grammar snob, I pride myself on generally clean manuscripts. Not that I don’t need editing — believe me, I do — but the edits usually aren’t for grammar or punctuation, at least not on a large scale. So when I Read more about Beta readers ~ be careful what you ask for![…]

Help! I’ve misplaced my modifier and I don’t know what to do!

My target for this week’s rant is the misplaced modifier and its close cousin, the dangling participle. I can think of no other grammar no-no that can create as much confusion as these woefully common (and often hilarious) errors. Why? Because they cause a reader to stop mid-sentence and force the reader to reconstruct the Read more about Help! I’ve misplaced my modifier and I don’t know what to do![…]

Spelling schmelling?

I’ve been ranting this past month or so about how important it is for professional communicators to use proper language and grammar, and how vital it is for story-tellers especially to be wary of falling into the trap of pop culture fads in our written language. Why? Because anything that forces the reader to do Read more about Spelling schmelling?[…]