Tag Archives: Basic grammar usage

Writing Pet Peeves, Part Deux – Mea Culpa

So yesterday I put up a piece about  my number one pet peeve and I heard from A LOT of you. On facebook, via my email, I even had one phone call. Based on those responses I have two mea culpas to offer.

#1. I, in no way, shape or form, meant to slam writers who are self-published. I was making a dig about big publishing houses and the apparent lack of fact checking and it came out wrong – much to my embarrassment and chagrin. Every self-published author I know spends countless hours on self-editing, in addition to paying for professional editing, to ensure their work has no mistakes. I know this. So I apologize ten thousand times if I offended any and all self pubbed writers. I truly do.

#2 I heard from many of you that your dictionary definition of PRONE was, to lay flat. That is true. It is. BUT, the continuation of the definition is: to lay flat COMMA face downward ( to lay flat, face downward.) That comma is there for a reason, folks!!! When you get a back massage, you are prone. When you are sleeping on your stomach, you are prone. When you are a sniper and hidden in a blind waiting to strike, you are prone.

The reason I was on such a rant yesterday was because I read this line in a new book: “(THE HEROINE – I won’t name her!) was prone on the bed. (THE HERO) wrapped her legs around his waist and bent to kiss her on the lips.” Now that you know the true definition of prone, picture this sentence. The heroine is face down – according to the author (Prone, remember?). Her man wraps her legs around his waist ( PICTURE THIS, PEOPLE! Her butt is facing him) and kisses her on the lips. How? Did she spin her head around like in the Exorcist???

Get it??!!

Okay, no more rants. If you write prone as a movement and you mean the character is on their back, just know if I read your book, I will be disappointed in you ( I’ll still love you, but I’ll be disappointed!)

My next blog will feature the top most annoying writing pet peeves. ( Mine and every other author’s!)

In my most recent book, THE VOICES OF ANGELS, no one is prone.



Love is the last thing Carly Lennox is looking for when she sets out on her new book tour. The independent, widowed author is content with a life spent writing and in raising her daughter. When newscaster Mike Woodard suggests they work on a television magazine profile based on her book, Carly’s thrilled, but guarded. His obvious desire to turn their relationship into something other than just a working one is more than she bargained for.

Mike Woodard is ambitious, and not only in his chosen profession. He wants Carly, maybe more than he’s ever wanted anything or anyone else. As he tells her, he’s a patient man. But the more they’re together, Mike realizes it isn’t simply desire beating within him. Carly Lennox is the missing piece in his life. Getting her to accept it-and him-may just be the toughest assignment he’s ever taken on.

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Filed under Author, Characters, Contemporary Romance, Family Saga, Life challenges, Literary characters, love, MacQuire Women, research, Romance, Romance Books, The Voices of Angels, The Wild Rose Press, Wild Rose Press Authoe

Writing Pet Peeves

Okay, this may be a rant – sorry if it sounds like one.


I’m reading the brand new release of one of my all-time favorite authors and I found a mistake a fact-checker should have caught. This is the second time in a week I’ve found this particular mistake – the other was in an older book by a different fav author.

What the heck has happened to  fact checkers in the publishing industry? These are not self published books where I would expect to find errors – these are from two of the BIG 5!! Here’s the mistake – remember: it’s the same one I found in two different books: both writers used the word PRONE to denote a person lying on their back, face upward. WRONGWRONGWRONG!!! SUPINE means lying face upward, prone means lying face downward. Why does this bother me so much, you ask? Well, I’ll tell you.

When I was in nursing school in the late 1800’s (!) we used to write our nursing notes by hand. It’s all done electronically now. I wrote a note once on a comatose patient that read  “Pt. appears comfortable and is lying prone in bed.” I got reported to the Director of Nursing by the patient’s doc and a written warning note was placed in my academic file. Why? Because the patient had a tracheostomy tube and was on a ventilator and there was no way on God’s green earth he could have or should have been laying prone ( which means on his stomach) because he wouldn’t have been able to breathe. And the reason I got written up was because if the patient’s family had ever sued, the legal chart would have gone into evidence and court and I would have looked incompetent ( as would the hospital) for placing the patient in position that obviously could have killed him. The note should have read : “Pt. appears comfortable and is lying supine in bed.”
Here’s the easiest way to remember the difference ( if you don’t have a dictionary handy) “When you are SUPINE you are looking up at the PINE trees, ergo, you are on your back. When  you are PRONE you have you face pointed downward, or as I remember it: Face PLANTED downward.

Got it??

I’ve got more writing pet peeves, but this is enough negativity for one day. Do you have any? Let’s discuss, because I know there are thousands!!!!


Filed under Author, Contemporary Romance, Dialogue, Editors, Life challenges, Literary characters, research, Romance, Romance Books