jennygordon: (Star Gazer Lily)
Since this is my 400th blog post, which means I've been here on LJ for over four years (I started blogging in June 2010, long before most of you knew me), I thought I'd look back and see what was on my mind in September 2010. Unsurprisingly, I was obsessing over words. By way of a small celebration, I thought I'd share a little of that post here.

(Happy 400th post, to me, Happy 400th post ... etc)

From Blog Post, Sunday 5th September 2010:

I know it's stating the obvious to say that writers are generally people who are obsessed with words -

  • using exactly the right word in the right place at the right time

  • stringing together some of those right words in such a way that it makes a sentence sigh, or scream, or gasp

  • using words with a light touch that sneaks in character development, adds a precious detail to a scene, or encapsulates a point prefectly, and without the average reader even noticing that the world of the book is being built right there before them.

Being a writerly type myself, I completely 'fess up to the fact that I can be something of a word-pedant, and hey, that's okay in my book (see there, little writing pun.  Hah, I kill myself).  But seriously, it really is okay, because words are important to me.  I notice their use (clever or otherwise) in books I read, I often pay attention to those that different people choose to use in conversation, and I angst for ridiculous amounts of time (usually at rewrite stage) over tiny, single words and whether they're doing their job well enough in my own books.  Which is why I notice when:

  • someone uses the word 'ancient' to describe a C17th house.  I mean, where do you go after that to describe an Anglo-Saxon grübenhaus, or a Bronze Age roundhouse?  You've already called something from the C17th 'ancient', so which words are left to describe something far older?

  • someone uses the word 'electric' to describe the atmospheric conditions in a pseudo-medieval world.  These people don't have electricity, they don't know the word, and even when the author uses it in description, it throws me out of the book because, dammit, it's just not the right word to use!

If you're interested in reading the whole rant, it's here. In the meantime, please have a birthday cookie.



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January 2016



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