Actually, I prefer the term ‘Grammar Ninja.’

You’ll laugh.  You’ll cry.  Your forehead will leave a dent in the surface of your desk.

If you haven’t seen it yet, you should watch the YouTube video titled “So You Want To Be a Writer.”  (It’s hilarious, even if you’re not a writer and don’t want to be one.)

*waits*

Okay, now that you’re back after watching the video, I wish to share with you a few of the thoughts that went through my head…

Says the Wannabe Author character, “Most agents are just losers who couldn’t get book deals.”

Wannabes (not to be confused with aspiring/new authors — wannabes expect success without effort) sometimes say much the same thing about editors and proofreaders:  ‘If u were a real writer u would of write ur own book and not be a hater cos im gonna be RICH and your not lol!!!  ur a dork lol!!!!!!!!! fuck you grammer nazi lol!!!!!!’

I think this sort of hostility is meant to make us feel bad for giving a damn about good writing and for wanting stories that are readable.  I don’t feel bad about it, though.

(Mercenary Proofreader says, “That’s ‘Fuck you, comma, grammar nazi,’ with an a in grammar.’  Also, I prefer the term grammar ninja.”)

Agents don’t make a lot of money, by the way.  They get what, about fifteen percent of the royalties?  That’s fifteen percent of the fifteen percent the author gets from the publisher.

RA (stands for Real Author) says,  “So do you think that being able to read and write your native language makes you qualified to write a novel?”

No, but it would be an excellent place to start.  *sigh*

RA also says, “The publishing industry really sort of expects you to have the spelling and grammar thing down.”  To that, WA replies, “But I’m the talent.  That’s what editors are for.”

I’m imaging WA with the Red Pen of Doom (DOOM, I tell you!) shoved up his/her left nostril into his/her brain…

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About Thomas Weaver

I’m a writer and editor who got into professional editing almost by accident years ago when a friend from university needed someone to copyedit his screenplay about giant stompy robots (mecha). Having discovered that I greatly enjoy this kind of work, I’ve been putting my uncanny knack for grammar and punctuation, along with an eclectic mental collection of facts, to good use ever since as a Wielder of the Red Pen of Doom. I'm physically disabled, and for the past several years, I’ve lived with my smugly good-looking twin Paul, who writes military science fiction and refuses to talk about his military service because he can’t. Sometimes Paul and I collaborate on stories, and sometimes I just edit whatever he writes. It's worked out rather well so far. My list of non-writing-related jobs from the past includes librarian, art model, high school teacher, science lab gofer… Although I have no spouse or offspring to tell you about, I do have six cats. (The preferred term is "Insane Cat Gentleman.") I currently spend my time blogging, reading, editing, and fending off cats who like my desk better than my twin’s.
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5 Responses to Actually, I prefer the term ‘Grammar Ninja.’

  1. I’m even pickier. I want stories that are readable and (gasp) ENTERTAINING. Shoot me.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. nrlymrtl says:

    I was an investigator for 7 years, and I definitely feel the pin of the the Real Author in this video chatting with the Wannabe Author. Many things take training, time, dedication, and plenty of mistakes before you get good at it.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I ran across this one in the autumn of 2012, and it’s still hilarious (“I have a gun in my car.”) What was not so funny was running across legions of wannabe puppies in the CreateSpace “community,” when I was looking for tips about formatting my manuscript. I saw messages whining that “Somebody read my preview and said it was HORRIBLE!” which were followed by treacly reassurances that there was “nothing wrong” with said previews, and that the respondents “loved” them. Well, I went to see the previews in question, and do you know what? They really were horrible. That’s when I quit looking for formatting advice there, and figured it out on my own.

    Liked by 1 person

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