Thursday, September 12, 2013

Dashing Through the Prose

All the world's a stage...and one man in his time plays many parts, Shakespeare wrote.  His words chisel away at my own misconceptions about my life as a writer.  Even Shakespeare would be amazed how fast the stage is changing, especially in the writing world.  I feel like a swimmer in choppy waters fighting against the undertow.  My knees are bloody from scraping against the rigid rules of grammar and punctuation in the coral below.  The sharks smell blood in the water.  Will I ever learn to play the part of a writer?

Yesterday I found the answer — in an important stroke — the dash.  To the outsider it may appear insignificant.  For me, it's like changing from a dog paddle to the breast stroke.  There is great joy knowing the dash is at my fingertips.  I can access it anytime on my MacBook Pro by pressing Shift—Option—Dash (that key to the right of the number 0).  Here's a great example of what the dash means to me, from Linda Ellis:

Yes, Mr. Shakespeare, all the world's a stage.  Even though I fumble with my lines at times, I'm confident about one thing — I will use my dash to add life to my story.  I will learn to play my part to the fullest of my ability.  How about you?  Are you ready to go dashing through the prose?  Please share your thoughts in the comments section below — please share your dash.

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