I spent a few minutes the other day walking around Casa de Wetherington with my trusty spray can of WD-40 (do you ever wonder what became of WD’s 1 through 39? I do), applying its lubricating wonderfulness to all the squeaky hinges on doors in this palatial residence. It not only makes me a “manly man” in Cindy’s eyes (and, she says, I look a hell of a lot better than Bob Villa doing it), but more importantly it removes the sometimes distracting noises that occur, especially when I’m trying to sleep in while Cindy is going in and out of the bathroom in the master bedroom.
That got me to thinking about “squeaks” in writing. You know; you’re reading along and all of the sudden something pulls your attention away from the story. It could be a misspelled word, an obvious (or even not-so-obvious) grammatical error or perhaps nothing more than poor phrasing, but whatever it is that “squeak” interrupts, and sometimes even spoils, your reading experience.
While I’m certain I don’t always succeed, I feel it is incumbent upon me as a writer to do my very best to eliminate as many of those “squeaks” in my writing as is possible. I have a responsibility to check my research, spelling, grammar and phrasing in order to try to be sure that the reader has the best experience possible.
Because, as we all know, those “squeaks” can be downright irritating.
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