One of My Favorite Days!

The last day of ANY college class! I have to admit, this class went fairly well, and I had a great professor. He even suggested I submit my Graduate Research Paper to a magazine, journal, or online publication! I was shocked, but also very happy for the great encouragement. It really is nice to be recognized for the amount of hard work one invests in that type of assignment.

Throwing Papers in Air Image
courtesy of rockislandschools.org

 

So to celebrate, I dropped my HR Management class that was scheduled to begin tomorrow. It is starting to get nice here in West Michigan, and I want to read books that I pick. I also have a couple of editing jobs I just started working on, so I am very excited about that. I also plan on a lot of motorcycle rides, swimming pool time, and just plain laziness until my next class starts on June 23rd.

Yeah; June 23rd. Not the greatest time to start a college class, but it is my last required core class, and this is the last time it is offered this year, so I have to take it then or wait until 2017. I am already crossing fingers that that class will go as well as this one did.

So plan on a lot of book reviews, some featured authors, great quotes, and I will try to limit my grumbling to my parenting blog 🙂

Punctuation Overload? Or: Maybe Not? Okay; Slightly.

Have you read a story with more punctuation in it than actual words? I myself am guilty of abusing the very basic comma. You have likely noticed me doing this in my posts. Every. Single. One. I like using periods to emphasize how I am feeling as well.

You see what I did there, right? Oh; I did it again, just now.

Okay. Sorry. I am really done now.

But as I have watched, and continue to watch, my 4 daughters go through school, it is beyond obvious that the emphasis on basic grammar and language structure is nowhere near what I stressed about. They do not even have to read the books that my 3 siblings and I had to read. I am positive none of my girls have any idea what “The Scarlet Letter” is.

So I am about to unleash some random Proper-English-Etiquette-If-You-Care-To-Use-It posts.

I am pretty sure we are all going to have fun with this one 🙂

Editing For Dialect

My biggest concern when editing a story that uses a specific dialect, is that not everyone may understand that is what is going on, and think I am a terrible, hack-job editor.

I am currently editing a story that uses dialect different than you find in the majority of English written books. The dialect being used is not a heavy accent that portrays someone who lives in the Deep South, or New England, or the likes. It is not a play on the words so much, as it is that there are words missing.

Words are missing because the characters in the story use English as a second language. I am sure we have all had the pleasure of meeting an interesting person who did not use English as their main way of communicating. So you have a conversation that seems almost abbreviated, with the ‘extra’ words that are used in the English language not being used when someone is using English as their second language.

Have you heard that the English language is the hardest language to learn? It is true. More than any other language, the English language has so many “rules and regulations” concerning the use of it, that it can be difficult for pretty much anyone to use it correctly, even if it is the only language they know.

So for an example, what you might read is the following; “She found him at bus station.” If I were writing the story, I would say “She found him at the bus station.” I see nothing wrong with writing a story this way, when it is necessary to set the scene and make it authentic.

I am currently editing a story by a very talented author, and it took about 3 sentences into the second chapter where the characters were having a conversation for me to realize that what I thought were errors, were intentional. The main characters use English as their second language. I think if the author did not write it using this dialect, it would take away from the story.

Which brings me back to my main concern; will everyone who reads this story understand that it is supposed to be written in that style? I think I am pretty safe, as it is a very in-depth story and one that will interest a specific genre.

If you are a writer, do you use dialect in specific novels you write to lend authenticity to your story?