Mr. Jelly Sells A Painting

Luuuurve: Kindle samples. You know why? Because they save me from buying books with sentences like this:

(Note: I replaced the names and titles.)

Peterson Jelly, youngest son of the Earl of Forbearance, made a fortune selling erotic art that outstripped his oldest brother’s inheritance.

Hatesssesssss: Carelessly written sentences. Because they are likely to mean the story itself is careless. On many levels. The way that sentence is careless.

Mr. Jelly: Ah, Mr. Middlesex, you’ve made a wise purchase (wraps up painting of a naked woman holding a lemon). This little beauty, heh heh, will outstrip my older brother’s inheritance by Tuesday next. Thursday at the latest!

Mr. Middlesex:
And if it doesn’t?

Mr. Jelly:
Bring it back and I’ll paint in a pear. I guarantee all my dirtiest work!

I believe the author meant that the fortune Mr. Jelly makes outstrips the amount of his brother’s inheritance. But that isn’t what she wrote. And yes, any reasonably competent reader will understand what she intended, but come on! Professional writers are supposed to be better than that. There is no way in hell the author read her story with a careful, critical eye.

Sentences like that are why if you’re going to self-publish original work, you must hire a skilled editor.

There are even more problems embedded in there, but it would give me a headache to start on them.

Thank you, Kindle samples.

Why, yes. I AM in a crabby mood. I’ve been sick since last weekend. How could you tell?

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2 Responses to “Mr. Jelly Sells A Painting”

  1. Crystal says:

    Carolyn–I’m a chronic blog-stalker of your Writing Workshop. Your lessons have helped me improve and I thank you! I can’t wait to thank you in person; I’ll be first in line at the RWA literacy signing.

    Don’t be scared. I’m normal. At least in the not-creepy way.