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Friday, August 15, 2014

So, How Much Slang do You Use?

The above is the title of a USAToday column known as “POP CANDY” by Whitney Matheson, and apparently slang is all over the place. So, why does this matter to writers?  Well, it does if you, as a writer, aspire to write compelling and believable dialogue for your characters.  Here’s the link to the column:

Every group, an even sub-group, of people creates slang and it has been done since humans have been around.  I’m sure there’s even slang sign language.  I work in the IT field and there are plenty of examples of slang that has come from that field.  I often hear people say things like, “I think I need a reboot,” or, “I have to defrag my brain,” among other sayings and we all know what these references mean.

However, the list on the column referenced above has me shuddering a bit at some of the terms because not only do you need to know the terms, but you need to know the context in which to use them. Ah, but writers are used to lots and lots of research.  I also like to people watch and it is absolutely amazing what you will discover when you just sit and listen and watch.

If you really want to shudder take a look at the text messaging and online chat abbreviations listed at


1 comment:

  1. I never text. It would cost extra and not worth it. I can always email from my phone.