Friday, June 16, 2006

New punctuation mark needed--the frisson ~

In my writers' critique group last night, they read where my heroine Maggie saw the murder and jumped into another cab. They liked the tension of the story and the funny second cab driver, but they also stressed that I use too many punctuation marks!

Well, the woman is overwrought, having just seen a murder! No, just a body, actually~

And this morning, I decided we need another punctuation mark~ And that's it. You just saw it. The "tilde" in Spanish, the "similar to" in math.

Because, doesn't it even just look like a little "whoo~"

Not quite a shout, (or the mental equivalent thereof, Browne & King in Self-Editing for Fiction Writers ) but more emotion than a period indicates, just a little frisson of enthusiasm~

And that's it~ I'm adopting the tilde and calling it the frisson! That is, the frisson~

A lot of us live relatively quiet lives and don't often see bodies in cemeteries, but I have a feeling that in some of these life-or-death situations we write about, if we were facing them in real life and someone quoted us, they would find a period inadequate. I suspect they would use exclamation points in our quotes more than we do in our fiction.

There are cases when a period is too blah and an exclamation point too strong. And without the right kind of punctuation, a sentence's words could be misconstrued and understated.

Words are not always enough. Context is not always enough. That's why we have punctuation. Even so, who hasn't had their email or note misunderstood in some way?

So, here's to a new punctuation mark, the frisson~

Works for me~ : ) What do you think?


Patricia said...

Yea~ Margo,
I think grammar is long due for a change~~~
I like the little squiggly line. Adds some pizzazz to the puntucation marks.

CHickey said...

Love it! Wonder if you can make it take off.

Margo Carmichael said...

I'm surely going to try~ LOL~

rhyl said...

Go Margo, readers need a little excitement, something to ponder on.

Michelle said...

Yoy are~so funny! I love your sense of humor. Can't wait to see you!

Michelle said... are~so funny! Can't wait to see you in September! Or should I say can't wait to see you~in~ September? Nah, I stink at frisson writing. You'll have to start the trend.