Writing Tips at GarySpeer.com

Tips for writers and musing about writing and life

Posts Tagged ‘jargon’

Using jargon: When does a toothpick become a throwpick?

Friday, October 29th, 2010:

When does a toothpick become a throwpick? Using jargon is something I’ve written about here before, and it’s a subject that deserves your constant vigilance. That toothpick-throwpick question is not really a riddle, but one of the many fascinating questions arising from my regular morning breakfast routine at a nearby coffee shop — I constantly ask them, “Where are the toothpicks?” and they usually tell me, “The throwpicks? They’re right over there on the counter.” More than a waste of my curiosity, their use of the term got my wife and me thinking (yes, she’s a word person, too) about […] Read More >

Beware of jargon in your writing; use only as needed

Tuesday, February 16th, 2010:

It’s been awhile since I’ve mentioned “jargon,” so I thought it about time to put together a brief reminder: Avoid using jargon in your writing, except when it’s necessary. “Jargon” may be loosely defined as language that belongs to a particular group, profession, or activity. So using it becomes necessary when you’re communicating with someone who understands the particular jargon you’re using. For example, think about the commentators at the current Winter Olympics events (I am writing this about half way through the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics) and about the way they describe the various events. Think about some of […] Read More >

‘Beware the Jabberwock’ — or, avoid using jargon in your writing

Tuesday, August 11th, 2009:

When I was in high school, my best buddy and I found Lewis Carroll’s poem about the Jabberwock absolutely hilarious. We would often pass each other in the halls, or walk together into classrooms eloquently reciting parts of it in unison: ‘Twas brillig, and the slithy toves Did gyre and gimble in the wabe: All mimsy were the borogoves, And the mome raths outgrabe. “Beware the Jabberwock, my son! The jaws that bite, the claws that catch! Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun The frumious Bandersnatch!” Jabberwocks and Bandersnatches aside, my purpose here isn’t to exegete (jargon?) Carroll’s fun poem. […] Read More >