OMG! It’s a hundred years old today. That’s right – it’s exactly a century since Admiral of the Fleet Sir John Arbuthnot Fisher – Lord Fisher, First Baron Fisher of Kilverstone – coined the acronym we all know and love. He came up with OMG (“Oh! My God!”) in a letter of 9 September 1917 … More OMG, it’s the centenary of OMG!
I thought I’d share this dyspostrophic sign I found outside a shop in Marewa, the ‘art deco’ suburb of Napier, New Zealand. Of course it’s an excuse for me to write a headline with three recursions. Trees behind are Canary Island date palms. I took it on a mid-winter’s day, incidentally. Enjoy. The suburb itself is … More Revenge of the return of the son of Rogue Apostrophe
It’s a funny old world, if you look at it. Last weekend my wife and I found this in a café: Meanwhile my brother-in-law found this on a freeway while visiting Pittsburgh, and remarked: ‘I guess if it’s an emergency, it’s an emergency…’ Then there’s the sign I found in Napier, New Zealand – a significant gauge … More Inspirations: I have seen the sign, and it is funny
One of the hardest skills to master in writing fiction is dialogue. It’s extremely difficult – even well established authors often struggle. When it comes to quick-fire dialogue, it’s hard to go past Hemingway – check out Farewell To Arms, for instance. Much of the time he didn’t even have to put ‘he said’, ‘she … More Nano writing tips: making dialogue real
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – your voice, as a writer, is important. It sets the tone. And if you do it right, it will set your writing apart. Sometimes a distinctive voice works even if other things are wrong. Take Hamish Clayton’s novel Wulf (Penguin 2011). It’s a fantastic read – up … More How to build your writing voice and meet great people in one go
I thought I’d start the week with a bit of grammatical frivolity. 1. Misplaced-hyphens are annoying. Compounds are usually verbs, not-nouns, try not to stretch the point. 2. And remember, conjunctions should not start sentences. 3. A single interrogative suffices. More do not add a sense of mystery. Got it????? 4. Fragmentary sentences. Irritating. 5. … More Viking is a verb, and other grammatical fun
A few days ago a reader of this blog asked me whether I’d ever posted on point-of-view in novel writing. I hadn’t, but promised I would. The question, specifically, was whether it’s possible to change from first to third person in a novel. – switching the point of view from which the story was being … More Worldbuilding: points of view for writers – by request