I have had people criticize my work for breaking conventional rules of writing and grammar. Sometimes, these notes are accurate, and I make corrections. Often times however, they are given by over analytical people who are more concerned with picking out the placement of a comma or a semicolon than actually understanding and enjoying the story. Sadly,
these self-appointed, exalted, gate-keeping grammarians would waste a day at the beach studying a droplet of water and completely miss out on the majesty that is the ocean.
On my Amazon author page, I state clearly ---
"I'm a storyteller, one who uses the written word to tell tales. I am not a professional essayist nor English professor. My grammar is not always perfect and my sentence structure not always correct. To me, what is most important, all that is important, is the story."
I have had been contacted by those who would like to edit my work, and maintain "My Author's Voice." What gives rise to curiosity is --- "How do you know my voice if you haven't read my works? If you haven't gotten to know me? If you don't know or understand the story I am trying to tell?
Imagine if those anal retentive, punctuating perfectionist exercised their
influence over the works of of the late great neo-expressionist artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. If you don't know Basquiat's work, have an open mind when you google it, because to the closed minded, tight-assed perfectionist, the genius of his work is completely lost.
However, if he had an over-bearing, English professor type hovering over his shoulder --- What would he have become? Instead of groundbreaking art, what would he have been pigeonholed into creating? If he would have created anything at all?
In my stories, if I overuse commas, it is because I want the reader to slow down and take in a certain part of the story. If I use run on sentences, it is because I want the reader to quicken his or her pace. If I use sentence fragments, it is because at that point in the story, the character is fragmented and I want to convey that to the reader through the use of the narrative. If, instead of listing things with only commas, I use and overuse "and" it is because I want the reader to place emphasis upon each idea I am conveying.