Tuesday Night Special

I haven’t used that title before and here we are again with “morning pages” and I think it’s getting easier. I wrote on my business blog, You Add Value first and I guess that means I have to write 300 fewer words here.

That reminds me. While I’m sure you can find errors on these posts, I don’t always correct them as this is a writing exercise.

But I find errors all the time and I’m not talking about a dangling participle. I think that that is the way human beings speak even if it’s not technically proper english.

I mean using less when fewer is correct. In the sentence in the first paragraph I resisted the urge to write 300 words less and that may have been ok, but 300 fewer words sounds better to me. I know I’m not the pinnacle of correctness with regard to the English language, but there has been a steady decline over the last couple decades of misspellings just plain poor usage of words and tenses and a whole lot more.

When I was a kid I first noticed it on restaurant signs where it might say “Eat’s”. Really? Does the restaurant below to someone named Eat? Apostrophes are not that difficult most of the time. Does something belong to someone? In Spanish you would say jugo de Pablo if the juice belonged to Pablo. In English we would simply say Pablo’s juice.

We also use the apostrophe to take the place of a letter or letters. Instead of cannot we say can’t. That’s a contraction. In Star Trek The Next Generation (TNG for real fans!), the android crew member, Data, could not use contractions for many years. He would always say cannot and never say can’t.

That’s the basics of apostrophes. Possession (Not the scary kind). Contractions (You’re making the words smaller).

Again, I’m sure that others would probably use dashes in the above sentences, so I’m not necessarily a big-time expert.

But how hard is the apostrophe?!

There is one thing you may really have to stop and think about and that is it’s and its.

Remember, you always need a placeholder in a contraction. So…it’s means it is and its (without an apostrophe) means that it possesses something.

There is never a reason to add an apostrophe to the spelling of a word just because it looks like maybe it should go there. What is the reason for putting it there?

Really. Stop and ask yourself why it’s there and then you will never spell beaches as beache’s. Or Taco’s. Does the restaurant below to Taco? If that’s really true and the name of the owner of the restaurant is Taco, then I guess you might name the restaurant Taco’s. But if you want a half dozen tacos, then you get six tacos NOT six taco’s.

If you never learned it, I am sorry, but NOW you know.

Unless you’re just spelling funky because you’re in a band. Then it’s still incorrect, but I guess it’s cool.

Maybe after Prince became The Artist formerly known as Prince and then he was The Artist and then he was that symbol that had both male and female symbols combined. I think…

Maybe after all that this stuff doesn’t matter.

Maybe I shouldn’t be such a stickler. But, somebody’s gotta watch this stuff, right?

The LA Times. THE LA TIMES!

I can’t believe how many misspellings or improper words are in there. I don’t even read the whole paper and I’ll bet I find something at least half the time I read it.

Some of you might be prejudiced because it’s viewed by some as liberal. The political orientation is irrelevant to this discussion.

A well-written paper is a well-written paper. There have been a lot of Pulitzer prizes over the decades.

I live in San Diego County and I get it Thursday through Sunday.

One dollar. For all four days! I couldn’t pass that up. But I digress…

To see papers of that stature lose their ability to spell or use words properly is a little sad.

But maybe there just aren’t enough people left to notice the mistakes.

I mean, if you think Taco’s is an appropriate name for a restaurant that’s owned by Ralph, well, I don’t know what to say.

But now you know.

That seemed like a pretty good place to end it, but I think I should write a little more. Someone told me that when they do morning pages online that most people count it as 750 words.

But if you’re really going to be a writer and you’re supposed to write at least three pages, well, I counted the words in the first book of The Game of Thrones. Not all of them. Just a random page. There were something like 372 words on the page and three times 372 equals 1116 words. Let’s even round down to 1100. Well, that’s considerably more that 750 words.

Lucky for me I wrote those 300 or so words before I wrote here. Right now I’m at about 840 words.

The thing is, if you really want to write, you need to keep going. You need to find that place where you let the words flow out of you and while it’s good discipline to write so many words per day, you should (I know some don’t like shoulds) be getting to a place where you love it. Even when you hate it. Well, I don’t actually ever hate it myself, but I do know that sometimes it’s difficult.

That’s where the morning pages comes in. Write, write, write and write some more.

Next thing you know you’ve got the title of your book – Camp Alien – and the only other book with that title is aimed at preteens.

So if I get down to it, I’ll have Camp Alien published before somebody else writes a book fit for adults with that name.

If I missed one I’m still using it. I’m not copying anybody. I came up with it right as I was waking up.

My dreams have been helpful that way recently.

Stay tuned. And keep writing. I think I’m over 1300 words so far today!

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2 responses

  1. Thanks! Did you end up coming to San Diego?

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