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July 19, 2017


Hank Phillippi Ryan

I so agree with you about the first sentence. I just calculated, and in nine of my 10 books, the first sentence never changed. (In book 10, though, I changed it about 75,000 times.)

We all have our rituals and ways, right? And that is somewhat reassuring. There's always a moment, crossing fingers :-) when you think: oh, I have this! And you can start.

Good luck!

Dean James

Hank, glad to see I'm not the only one!

Laura DiSilverio

I feel your grammar pain. Misplaced modifiers, apostrophe errors, using plural pronouns because one is too lazy to type s/he or something similar, word usage (irregardless, anyone?). Other peeves: "just between you and I," "less" when "fewer" is correct).

Dean James

Those are some that bother me, too, Laura, especially "less" v. "fewer."

Charlaine Harris

I have a lot of little tics, Dean, and I suspect most writers do. There are some things I can't ever seem to remember grammatically, and some things make me nuts whenever I encounter them.


I have some OCD, like reading a series in order. Mainly so the reviews will be in order. Same goes with order of other things I review.

However, grammar and spelling aren't one of mine. Which is a good thing since they are a huge weakness of mine. I try; I really do. But between typos and never remembering certain things, I fail often.


I also have some grammar and punctuation OCD. Some of my pet peeves have already been mentioned, such as "between you and I" and making plurals with apostrophes. Another pet peeve of mine is the elimination of the comma before a name in direct address, such as: "You're sure right about that Dean." It's the comma that tells us that someone is speaking to someone else, rather than about him.

Elaine Viets

Good luck on your new novel, Dean. (Note that comma, Kris.) I'd rather write the whole novel than the title and have long discussions with my agent and editor on choosing the right one. But I can write it with a working title.

Gail Gardner

Love this post!


One grammar issue I am fanatical about is the Oxford comma. Every time someone leaves it out, it drives me crazy!

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