On Writing & Publishing by Robin D. Owens

Personal notes on writing techniques, writing a novel, my writing career and threading your way through publishing a book.

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Location: Denver, United States

RITA Award Winning Author -- that's like the Oscar, folks! Futuristic/Fantasy Romance and Fantasy with Romantic Subplots.

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Thursday, November 17, 2005

Spelling and Grammar

First, don't ignore them in school. I never learned how to diagram a sentence, but I did learn other things. Once you write you learn even more from your various crit buddies, one of whom will be a grammar Queen/King. Since I got marked down on a contest before I was published on split infinitives, I know about them, too. Copy editor always on me for farther and further...and my two different publishing houses punctuate differently, as does my wonderful person who does the page proofs for me...

But I'd say I have a pretty good handle on spelling and grammar -- not great, and you will see that I don't spell check this blog as often as I should...but, hey, this is the real me. You might also notice that I tend to do "British" spelling -- "controlling" etc.

Yes, be as scrupulous as you can with spelling and grammar, DO use the spell check on all your work. DO have someone check it if you feel shakey (sp?) in it -- those "ey" words can get me, too.

A FEW typos or spelling errors won't kill your chances. Bad grammar might unless you are using it to make a point, and for that I hope it's only in one person's POV and anything else you write is pretty-much-correct English.

The reason for most of these rules are so that we can communicate well through writing.

And, huh, when I hit the little spelling tab on the above menu, nothing happened. So guess I have to depend upon myself...and Learning Spelling was a Childhood Nightmare for me, not kidding, along with Cream of Corn soup.

Love to all, and may all the words flow from you in perfect shape today.

Robin

3 Comments:

Anonymous Crystal said...

I use Word and it underlines misspelled words in red and incomplete sentences in green. The incomplete sentence underline is annoying because I usually do it for effect, but it helps me modify to complete sentences when half of my page is underlined.

I only paid close enough attention in school to pass the class, rather than to learn anything. It's disturbing to realize while I'm writing, how little I know about the technical side of my craft. I always figured that when I "became a writer" all that stuff would come naturally to me...woops! Good thing I always took pride in my spelling, is all I can say. :D

1:37 AM  
Blogger Robin D Owens said...

Uh, the first thing I did was turn off my spelling and grammar check as I go because with made-up words it drove me crazy...which means I always have to do a manual one.

Robin

6:05 AM  
Anonymous Crystal said...

Hehe...I just right-click and select "ignore once" or "ignore all". You can also "add to dictionary" which I'm wary about doing because if I do spell a regular word wrong, I don't want it to stick if it's spelled like one I made up. If that makes sense. But I like the instant editing. It leaves the more creative stuff for the second draft.

11:44 AM  

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