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Annoying writing tics

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In something that I'm reading now, the boss scowls, the dog scowls, Mary Sue scowls- everybody scowls.

No one is pensive. No one is thoughtful. No one is worried. They just scowl.

scowl.jpg scowl2.jpg scowl3.jpg

Do you ever see this or catch yourself doing it??? I mean over doing it with a dialogue descriptors, not scowling. :icon_cat:

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When I edit, I see a lot more of the opposite: people writing dialog with no description of how they feel when talking, how what they're saying is affecting them or their audience, no mannerisms, nothing but what's being said. I feel adding some of this humanizes the situation, make the speaker and his audience more real and empathetic.

But I have to agree; if everyone is always scowling, something was probably off in their dinner. A bad piece of fish? Water brought in from Flint, MI? Eggs from Denmark, where they specialize in rotten ones? I'd scowl, too.


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Sometimes words like that are almost placeholders when our brain is a sentence or two behind our keyboard. It's much like when we speak. The old standard "you know" has been replaced in recent years by "I mean" but it's the same phenomenon; it gives us time to catch up. And words do stick in our brain as we go blithely though the writing action. A word that feels fresh and unique right now might be even more so a line or two down. It's all part of the process of having new eyeballs check our work for us when we think we're done.

And Cole, the next time you pull into a Scandinavian McDonalds and get the lutefisk Danish Egg McMuffin with stillwasser aus Flint, what the hell do you think YOUR facial expression will be?!

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Cole, like most Californians, seems to think that food regularly prepared east of the Sierra Nevada mountains is foreign food. Poached eggs on toast are readily available in restaurants up and down the East coast, and as far inland as I have cared to travel. They are a perfect breakfast since they do not require olls or fats to prepare. However, if you order them anywhere in the New England states, be ready to request 'dropped eggs' instead. Or, in the sort of low-end greasy spoon diner Cole is likely to stagger into after a night on the town, ask for 'Adam and Eve on a raft.'

In no case will Marmite be available for slathering or scraping onto them. That would negate the whole purpose of eating a healthful breakfast.

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If I order poached eggs, I don't order them on toast. I order them on corned beef hash, cooked to a crispy crust. The eggs blunt the sharp edge of the hash and add a creaminess to it. I strongly suggest you cut the toast from your diet and replace it with fried hash. Yum!

Listen to an expert. I've been eating for years, and do it well.


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I believe that both Marmite and its biological cousin Vegemite are specifically banned under auspices of the Geneva Protocol of 1925 and subsequent Chemical Weapons Convention. Poached eggs on anything other than toast are mentioned but apparently that section remains to be hashed out.

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I remember the story of a young Australian travelling to the USA who declared that they had Vegemite with them. They were quickly informed that Vegemite isn't food and they didn't have to declare it as such. That's a story from the 80s, so it's possible USA customs have reclassified it (though that may to make it an illegal weapon instead...)

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If one wants the un-opionated truth, the Daily Mail is not the best of sources. Bearing in mind, both the UK and Denmark are in the European Union, I'm not too sure if it is even possible to ban import of something made by another member state. That of course, would spoil a nice story and while I'm not sure what number it is, the rule about never letting the truth get in the way of a good story is pretty high up the list when it comes to tabloid journalism.

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