Monday, May 29, 2023

Creative Writing Challenge-Taking on UK English

When I began concepting The Princess Pose, my latest release in The Modern Royals Series, I knew I was writing the story of Princess Elizabeth of York. A story told only from her point of view.

Which left me with a huge creative decision to make as an American author, with a vast majority of my readers being American, do I write the book in American English? Or do I immerse myself in the character and write the book how a British heroine would think? What she would say-and all in proper UK English.

I pretty much knew what the answer would be when I sat down to type Chapter 1.

I wanted to tell Elizabeth’s story in UK English.

This one decision turned out to give me the biggest challenge of my writing career. Not only are there different names for things-a shopping cart is a trolley, for one-but spelling. Oh, the spelling I had to learn! Humour. Travelling. Apologise. GAH! I was backing up and correcting throughout the whole book. Who knew a flannel is a washcloth, and I had to come up with a whole new way to describe Roman’s shirts? Or that in the UK they don’t say “holiday” for “Christmas” and that I love to switch up Christmas with holiday for variety and that was completely wrong?

Trust me, there were many days I cursed this decision, LOL.

Of course, my spell check went crazy as I ventured into this new world of writing. so I had the oh-so-brilliant idea to change my Microsoft Word over to UK English. Great! It was awesome writing that day, having it spell check the UK way and none of my words were flagged for errors. VICTORY. Well, until I logged off and tried to log back in the next day. Password incorrect. I keyed again. Incorrect. Locked myself out. At that point, I’m cursing as I know the password and I know I typed it correctly-for an AMERICAN KEYBOARD. I never thought about, you know, the UK keyboard having different symbols. Like a pound key.

This book took longer to write because of this process. I had British beta readers and my British proofreader labored (or laboured, LOL) over each word making sure no Americanisms slipped through. Alexandra Morris, you have infinite patience. 😉

Would my writing process have been faster without the UK spin on writing? Yes. But I think the reading experience for this series is richer because I took the leap. I hope you all enjoyed taking that leap along with me, too.

You can get a copy of The Princess Pose at Amazon.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back To Top