I don't know what was up with murdering people in last week's WE Workshop, but the majority of you disproved that whole thing about music having charms that soothe the savage breast. Good job! We'll be doing the music exercise again because it's another one of my favorites.
A quick administrative bit here, before we get to the Boring Stuff That Keeps Us From The Fun Stuff:
I've gotten a few private Gather Mails about "joining" Saturday WE. This confuses me, but please! Do not blame yourself -- the fault is all mine, since I'm easily confused. Anybody that wants to play is more than welcome to join in the (what should be) fun. All you have to do is pick an exercise and write -- there's nothing more to it than that, I swear. All I ask is that you use the tag I provide (so your stuff shows up "related" to other folks' efforts,) and leave either the URL or the HTML clicky-link in the comment section of the current article so we can find your piece easily.
That's about it. There isn't any special membership requirement, no blood oaths, no dues. Just show up on Saturday (or any other day of the week,) and use that week's -- or any other week's -- exercise. The point behind them is pretty simple: I'm only trying to jog your juices and get you playing with words in ways you might not have thought of in the past. The amount of effort you put into these things is entirely up to you -- I only ask for my three paragraph minimum every week, but you're always welcome to do more.
Any further questions you might have, well -- you know where to find me.
Let's talk about our friend, The Apostrophe, in today's Boring Stuff That Keeps Us From The Fun Stuff. Apostrophes seem to almost universally trip people up. I struggle with them myself. They are used in two specific instances: To denote possession, as in "John's book", or to let us know a vowel has been removed in a contraction (not the kind that brings babies, Silly!) You know, like, "do not" becomes "don't" and "They are" becomes "they're." Our pal the apostrophe makes it so we can use a few less letters in our speech and our writing. It's punctuation's gift to the lazy.
But, as I said, using the apostrophe correctly is a lot of work, and it's an itty-bitty, two letter word that tends to cause the most frequent of errors. I'm talking about... IT! No, not the Stephen King novel. I have found myself downright befuddled when confronted with "it." Then a friend of mine say me down and explained it thusly:
There are only TWO instances when you need an apostrophe with "It" and an "s," -- when you are forming the contraction for, it is, or when you are discussing something that belongs to the comic book character "It." Since the second one rarely comes up in polite conversation or writing, you can pretty much rest assured that the only time the apostrophe should be showing up to the party is to replace the "I" in "is."
There is no apostrophe in the "It" possessive (although I try to put one in there all the freakin' time, because old habits die hard.) It's merely "its." I know it's confusing, but it's true. My little trick is this: When I am confronted with the quandary of to "apostrophe or not to apostrophe," I stop myself and try to figure out if I'm saying, "it is" or trying to convey possession of something. I don't usually mess that one up, unless I'm distracted or rushed. But that's a decent little trick I've found to remove some of the confusion between "Its" and "It's."
That same little trick of "de-contractionalizing" will also save you from the embarrassment of mistaking "your" for "you're," and "they're" for "their."
So, when in doubt -- take the apostrophe out. Simple, eh?
Sandy Knauer owns a nifty little group dedicated to the apostrophe. You might want to check it out.
The Fun Stuff:
One Word Prompt Day -- Yay! The word for the day is, "Party."
Now, you might be wondering what you're supposed to do with that. The short answer is, "Anything you want." The longer, more involved answer is anything you want, because the word has multiple meanings, can be either noun or verb -- and I don't care how you use it. Just write whatever the word calls to mind for you. There's no "wrong" or "right" here. As for the other rules, once again -- there aren't any, other than our three paragraph minimum, use the tag provided and let us know what you've done.
Oh, and you are required to have fun with this. Now, go!
TAG TO USE: SWEWSPARTY