• Published:
  • January 22, 2018

A Specific Title!

Was that specific enough for you? No? But it is a title and I put specific in it, so that should allow you to know what this post is about. Still no? Damn, tough room.

I was making the rounds and came across an article that said everything should be specific in writing. That included fiction. Non-fiction I can see to an extent, but even then you don’t want to bore your audience to death. That’s probably why flavor of the week celebrity pays a ghostwriter to write their life story. Can’t have it being too specific or most would be over in two chapters.

If one wanted to be specific, think of all the gobbly goop you’d have to put into a novel. Do you really want to read how a character solves a difficult math problem by substituting this for that and whatever else for ten pages? If it was a non-fiction book on said math problem, then yep, that is what people are after. But fiction? Really?

Heck, even resumes, or maybe more cover letters, are tailor made to the job you are applying for. They aren’t super specific as that would bore and you’d get thrown on the “see ya later” pile. Again, if you are being asked to solve a math problem in your cover letter, then you would use specifics. But for everything you write?

Do you want me to tell you how the idea processed in my head? How I turned on the computer? How I opened the browser? How my fingers on my one good arm hit the keyboard? Or just type the damn post and let you read it? Do you also want me to specifically tell you that those questions were rhetorical?

Can you see how being specific may not always be the best case? Heck, it may be slim to none the best case. Even doctors aren’t specific and they train for years. “That’s normal” and “stuff” is many a doctor’s favorite words. Are you specific in everything?

Enjoy life, forget the strife.


Alex J. Cavanaugh

2018-01-22 15:21:49 Reply

I’m all about leaving some things up to the reader’s imagination.
I used to have a boss who pronounced that word pacific. Cracked us up every time.

    Pat Hatt

    2018-01-22 22:01:31 Reply

    haha some just can’t get it out the right way.


2018-01-23 02:36:57 Reply

Ha ha! My adopted daughter still says “pacific” as well as “expecially”…

I agree with leaving things to the readers’ imagination. There are still a few readers out there who have and use imagination!

    Pat Hatt

    2018-01-23 10:32:42 Reply

    haha some just say it that way. Yep, still a very few out there that you don’t have to lead by the hand.

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