Saturday, December 18, 2010

How To Drive A Writer Crazy

I started out as a writer. The other day someone said to me, "It takes a special talent to do that." I may have agreed then, but I think it's more solitude, and a need to be heard than it is talent. Anyone can write, as witnessed by some of the latest books by various politicians who are no longer in office.

A writer will obsess over details - in the story and in the words.

This story is about the words.

I recently bought something with my company name on it. I was excited and looking forward to get it. My heart sank when I opened the envelope and read "Ron Harper Voiceover's" The salesperson had taken it upon herself to add the apostrophe. She had to place the order again. There are really folks who believe plurals come with apostrophes.

I saw it again today: on a large company website. The had a list of their computers, televisions, monitors, and... "radio's" OK, so plurals only get an apostrophe if it ends in a vowel? (It does sound like a rule we would have in the English language, doesn't it?)

But here's the easy rule: (say it with me) Plurals Don't Get Apostrophes.



Think of the apostrophe as a handle. It has to be carried by the one who owns it.
That makes it possessive.
So it's Tim's keys on the table. Tim may think he has the keys to several cars, but all of the keys fit only one car. This gold one is one of the car's keys.

I feel a little better, now.

--Thanks for reading.

No comments: