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Lost Language

April 14, 2013

This is currently my 4th draft of my Sunday post for Squirrellywriter.  You see, Jason asked me to write a post about “…books.  Lit.  Your faves, or your tastes and how they change, or anything you like on the topic.”  Seems easy, right?  Not for me.  This topic has been addressed by thousands of people, so I feel I can hardly put a unique spin on it.  Since I pride myself on not being boring, this was quite the mountain to climb.

If you know me, I am a perfectionist when it comes to writing. I fuss with editors if they don’t go through each sentence with a fine-toothed comb.  I want to put my best foot forward.  In this, I sometimes get lost in writing to my audience and forget about myself.   Writing is a combination of both embracing the reader and entwining a piece of the author into the work.  One without the other is just words.

jack off

How does this translate into literature?  Today’s world is all about instant gratification.  This “right here, right now” mentality has its pros and cons.  Writers are able to produce a novel and then publish it immediately.  This is wonderful, because many people never had the opportunity to publish in the past.  My problem with it?  Crap gets published and sometimes does very well.

50-shades-of-grey-pictures-2Fifty Shades of Grey, by E L James, is a prime example.  Although the original stories were self-published online, a major publisher picked up the novels and put them on shelves without any apparent editing. I am not arguing that the book doesn’t have some draw to it.  The story has seduced audiences worldwide into a fetish sex frenzy, but the writing is elementary at best.  If you read my satirical take on the book, I broke it down by word choice.  It looks like she didn’t take the time to have anyone read it over.  She just published.  She may be laughing all the way to the bank, but does money define a good book?

I suck at self-editing.  That is why I have a list of people I call on to help me read over my blog posts and anything else I write.  This is because I take pride in my work.  What happened to pride in writing?  When did it become okay to write IN ALL CAPS and not use any punctuation or spel check

Our society thinks phrases like “Verbally Ejaculate” are naughty, though they can easily be found in works like Wuthering Heights.  I feel we are losing something in current works.  Writers used to embrace the written word as though it had a life of its own.  Now it seems we are sentenced to read novels written in Newspeak.  I often will look back at classical works of fiction to remember the beautiful potential we can find in literature.



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13 Comments leave one →
  1. April 14, 2013 2:13 am

    I sometimes wonder if I don’t entwine the author at the expense of the reader. Think you could help me with that?


    • April 14, 2013 10:17 am

      Hmmm I’m not sure that is a problem.


    • April 14, 2013 2:25 pm

      Though anything outside of a diary or journal requires considering your audience, writing, first and foremost, has to be something you enjoy, or there’s no point. So I think it’s fair to entwine the author most, at least in the first draft. 🙂


  2. April 14, 2013 3:58 am

    It is almost a tragedy that I must turn to video games like the Mass Effect series for both good story telling and appropriate grammar. I say almost because I am a game junkie and am highly grateful that my chosen addiction is at least not dumbing me down verbally.

    I should enlist an editor for my writing as I notice that much of it is rife with errors days after it has been posted.


    • April 14, 2013 10:18 am

      LOL that always drives me crazy. It is bad enough when I find errors, but days later… sigh. You have an excuse. A beautiful baby to distract you.


    • April 14, 2013 2:23 pm

      Editing and revision are much less fun than the original writing, but equally important. I deluded myself in blogging for years without having anyone read over my posts before publishing, thinking that I just didn’t make significant errors. Yeah right!


  3. April 14, 2013 12:54 pm

    Some days E.L. James makes me want to stop writing because what’s the use? If that’s what people want and that’s what sells, why bother? Other days, E.L. James inspires me to write. If that crap got published, I’m confident mine will.


  4. April 14, 2013 10:04 pm

    Oh gosh. Love this post! I am basically echoing what jeremylukens already said: The whole Fifty Shades of Grey thing often makes me want to give up on writing. Just because it’s so darn depressing. Then again, I try to remind myself there is good stuff out there, in the book-verse. Sometimes, we have to dig around to find it.


    • April 15, 2013 10:44 am

      There is a ton of great stuff. I love the classics best. Well historical fiction is the top of my list.


  5. April 16, 2013 8:40 am

    I worry about grammar, but there’s just so much I can do about it.
    My editor is now gone so I have to deliver whatever I can come up with lol.
    Good thing people knows and don’t mind, often I re-read comments and things I post and I’m honestly embarrassed, but hey!, I gotta own my crap.
    I haven’t read 50 shades nor plan to, everybody makes fun of it.
    Great post Becca.


    • April 16, 2013 9:58 am

      I totally understand, I suck at self-editing. Jason is good. If he is around, he usually will help. 🙂 I know Don’t Quote Lily is good too. I bet she might be able to help? We grammar suckers need to stick together.


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