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Old August 5 2013, 07:54 PM   #18
Timewalker
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Re: OT: Grammar Cops Unite!

Sgt_G wrote: View Post
Just toss in a few simple words with the accent and leave the rest spelled correctly, please. We'll get the gist that Scotty has a broage accent.
The word is "brogue."

scotpens wrote: View Post
Sgt_G wrote: View Post
The worst thing about dialogue is when the author attempts to convey a thick accent. Too often it ends up with whole sentences made up of words spelled "wrong" or clipped with apostrophes all over the place.
Deliberate misspelling to convey dialect pronunciation or to suggest the speech of people who are illiterate or poorly educated is called "eye dialect." It's been used by many notable authors but is considered rather un-P.C. nowadays.
Personally, I don't see anything wrong with that. Unless it renders everything completely unpronounceable, it's meant to convey how the characters' speech would sound if the story were read aloud.

It's quite an effective technique when used thoughtfully. Mark Twain is the example most people would think of, but C.J. Cherryh also used it quite well in her Merovingen Nights books.



Sgt_G wrote: View Post
As I said, some people look for things to be offended by. Years ago, I was working on a story, and I sent what I had to a friend to read over. He allowed a friend of his to read it (against my wishes that he keep it to himself). This other guy started writing me with comments, mostly saying how good the story was but also had a few minor points. All of a sudden, my e-mail box blew up, this guy was flaming me so bad. He was on a tear about how "racist" I must be. Why? Because of one character I brought in for a cameo. Here's how I described him:

The man walked the front of the room and stepped up on the stage. He towered over Commander Sahani. His skin was as dark as night; his hair might have been in years long past but was now a distinguishing silver. Upon his Police uniform, which he filled out with a bodybuilder’s physique, he wore the rank insignia of Commodore.

The problem? This character's name was Dennis Masterson. I picked the name by randomly opening the phone book and randomly sticking my finger to the page. This guy refused to believe that, because of course he just knew that I had to know the history of that name. Everyone knows that "Masterson" was the name given to the illegitimate child born to a slave woman, being "the Master's son", and given that I had to know that, I must be intentionally perpetuating the stereotype. I was so disheartened by the whole mess that I stopped writing that story and three others I was working on at the time. The only thing I've written since was TIMELINES.
So change the character's last name and finish the story.

Admiral2 wrote: View Post
I have a standard response to all the grammar cops out there.

Pay me for my stories and i'll make whatever changes you feel necessary. Otherwise, sit on it and rotate...
With an attitude like that, I'll make sure to avoid your stories, no matter what kind of grammar you use.
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