Monday, February 14, 2011

Nasty Little Habits


I should make this entry sexier for Valentines day. Hmmmm... maybe you could imagine Barry White reading it out-loud to you? Are you imagining that? Good. Let's get back to what we were talking about.

Nasty little habits.

Eating too many twix bars or cheese crunchies while typing. Getting gunk in my keyboard and not cleaning it out until the keys stop working. Leaving half empty glasses of water everywhere or forgetting to check for phone calls because I'm deep in the middle of a draft.

Or, using the word "that" in places where it serves no purpose. Inserting adverbs where I could do swimmingly without. Changing POV for a chapter because I feel like it. Using words because they're pretty and not because they're the best fit. Double spacing blog entries. Using passive voice as an act of rebellion. Sentence fragments.

Funny how the little things in life can be the most insidious. Funny how the rules are actually there for a reason, but that doesn't prevent me from racing past them as full speed. Funny how sometimes it's endearing and sometimes it's annoying. Funny how I don't always know the difference.

Guess that's what learning is for.

Nasty little habits.

Now you know mine.

Tell me yours.


  1. Oh those half empty glasses of water!!

  2. All of your writing ones could apply to me! Lol!

    Also, I have a terrible habit of leaving cupboard doors open, which means I usually run into them.

  3. I like the word "that" it has so many uses. Too bad it's over used. Happy Valentines day!

  4. I start sentences with proper nouns too frequently -see?

  5. I keep my nasty secrets at bay and under lock and key. At least I try. But it seems my friends know them all. Sigh. One of the few drawbacks of close friends. At least they accept and like me inspite of them! LOL. You have a fascinating blog, Roland

  6. I do the glass of water thing too. My nasty writing habit is repetition. I'll find a word I like and overuse it.

  7. I use "that" often as well. I'm trying to focus myself when I'm writing and stop using them so much . . . but it's a habit, and hard to break. :P

  8. You already know my habits because they're almost identical to yours.

  9. Howdy Crusader,

    Dirty laundry time--I love it! I'm a fan of dialogue tags. There, I said it ... I'm going to go watch Dr. Phil now.


  10. I dog ear my books. Now THAT is a nasty little habit. I do own bookmarks. I have no excuses.

  11. What a great set of habits, haha. I am guilty of snacking on too much of whatever is next to my computer. Eek.

  12. Suzanne - I know!

    Erin - Ooh, I've totally done this. The drawers in my old office were the perfect height for head-conking.

    Angela - I always seem to use it where it is completely unnecessary. Often I have to do another edit just to cut out all the "that"s.

    Lisa - At least that's clean writing. I think I use too many qualifiers to avoid starting with proper nouns. Heh.

    Roland - I know in the fictional world secrets only remain secrets until the second half of the book. We'll find out eventually! Oh, and welcome to the blog!

    Carrie - Ah, yes. We probably all have favorite words that we reuse over and over again. That's another good one.

    The Golden Eagle - I know! It's crazy. I know it's a problem, but I keep going back and finding more that I have to edit out. You'd think I could just stop doing it!

    Lydia - Ha! I did pick the good ones. ;)

    E.J. - Oooh, another good one. I know dialogue tags are supposed to be sparse at best, but I've read a lot of published work filled with them. I'd argue that they can be occasionally effective. But, what do I know? I've currently got cheese crumbs all over my keyboard.

    Jennifer - Ooh, you win! That one might be irredeemable.

    Saumya - Absolutely. It's a good thing I have active real jobs. Otherwise I'd be fat as a house. So easy to just snack on whatever is at hand.

  13. I leave cups of cold coffee all over the house and get crumbs in my keyboard.

  14. I use Parenthesis (a lot). I leave my dishes in the sink for far too long, as well as half drunk bottles of carbonated beverages around my apartment.

  15. I think it'd be more work to *not* double-space for blog entries that auto-single space for you. Unless you're going to convert part and parcel, I wouldn't consider that a "nasty little habit." Merely a "habit."

    By the way, I have a habit of pointing out mostly irrelevant things sometimes. Ahem.