Here's why I'm sad the holidays are over:
- I have to take down all our beautiful Christmas decorations (and I will probably put it off until next weekend.)
- I have to stop pretending that calories don't count because it's Christmas. :(
- I have to say goodbye to my sister and her family who are flying home to Colorado tonight.
Here's why I'm not:
- It's good to get back to work and back into a routine.
- God has blessed me so much, and I have a lot to look forward to in 2008.
- I don't have to hear "Little Saint Nick" by the Beach Boys or "Where Are You Christmas?" by Faith Hill one more time until next Christmas season.
Seriously, I could not even begin to count how many times I heard those two songs on the radio this past season. They must have been the pet songs of stations I listened to, and I got so SICK of them!!
Sometimes I notice authors using unique words, phrases, metaphors, etc. that seem to become "pets" in their writing. They sound great the first time and maybe even more if used sparingly, but after twelve times in one chapter (okay, I'm exaggerating) they get way too repetitous and stand out as annoying. My mom is an avid reader and she picks up on these all the time. She'll tell me about a great story she read but how she got tired of the author using some particular phrase over and over.
When I pick up on these pets, I make a note in my review for the copy editor and author to search for all instances of the particular word or phrase and then limit them to a few (and far between) instances.
I know it's hard to see these things in your own writing (and that's what editors are for!), but if you think you might have some pets in your latest work, do a quick search yourself. See how many times you described something with a favorite word or phrase. Then, please, if you find 93 instances, do your readers a favor and replace a few with something new, so they're not saying "No, not again!"
Happy Weekend and Happy New Year!