Category Archives: Writing

The Punctuation Revolution


What happened to punctuation as we knew it? If you’ve been striving to use it properly in print, digital technology has punctuation-markschanged the way we use it today. For example, we are more focused on word count than sentence structure. Even for the non-grammatically obsessed, deviations from the established rules of punctuation and grammar indicate a break from tradition.

With the proliferation of smartphones, tablets, texts, and social networking, we’re communicating our thoughts so much and so fast that punctuation has become less important, almost superfluous. Internet culture generally favors a lighter, more informal style of punctuation.

Continue reading

Leave a Comment

Filed under technical communication, Writing

What’s Your Niche?

BeWhoYouWhat’s your niche? As a writer, I often get asked this question.

I should be able to give an unequivocal answer, but the truth is I don’t specialize in any one area. I am not really an expert, except in my own curiosity.

What are you passionate about? I can answer that one. Technology (whatever’s new) and animals (dogs in particular). I have written quite a bit about both.

Where do you get your inspiration? There are three areas: my own life experiences (only what I can remember), other people’s life experiences (only what I can borrow), and what I hope to experience (only what I can imagine).

Vincent van Gogh said “I am seeking. I am striving. I am in it with all my heart.”

That’s what I care most about. The little morsels. The best ones.

Leave a Comment

Filed under Writing

On Being Preoccupied with Words

The tagline for my company, Working Words,  is “Getting right to the point.” It’s a promise to clients.

When I started this blog post, I wasn’t sure if “preoccupied” was the right word. I considered using ‘”obsessed.” The words are close, but slightly different. “Preoccupied” means that you are so absorbed in thinking about or doing something that you forget everything else. On the other hand, “obsessed” means that you never stop thinking about something. I chose “preoccupied” because once a writing project is finished, I stop thinking about the words I’ve used.

I can spend an inordinate amount of time with synonym and dictionary tools. The synonym feature in Microsoft Word is my best friend and I use it all the time. Right-clicking on any word (on a PC, anyway) brings up a list of word alternatives. If I change one word to another, I can click again and get another list. This can turn into a fun vocabulary game that I play for too long and forget everything else. The phone can ring, the dryer can beep, but I ignore (or is it “disregard”?) these distractions. I think this qualifies as a preoccupation.

Continue reading

Leave a Comment

Filed under Editing, Working Words, Writing