Insider Lingo

So I spent the last few weeks busy playing dance mom. Imagine me with a blank face asking: What is a sock bun? I have to make what in her hair? With a what? Sock in hand, long hair, I tried to do the impossible. Um... Pinterest? Please help me. Turns out it wasn't so hard, thank you Pinterest.

Until then, I had never even heard of a sock bun. Last year I mastered the "high bangs" and "smoky eye", which were just as big a mystery to me. I feel like a pro now. Well, until next year when I have to try something I've never heard of again.
I recently attended a meeting in a health facility and tossed around the term patient as if I was an insider. Didn't everyone in the health business use the word patient? I got sideways glances. When listening to the others speak in this group, I saw my faux pas. They used the term clients not patients. Oh my. I wasn't using the right word.

Audience, customers, patients, members, clients, patrons, recipients, readers, consumers, buyers, shoppers... each profession has a different term, how to know who uses what?

And the different lingo doesn't end there. Even different parts of our country have different lingo. We wear bunny hugs, whereas others wear pullovers and last week I was in a neighbouring province and saw a sign for a popover. I pulled it from the rack. Looked like a fancy-dancy bunny hug to me.

When we're writing we want our characters to be firmly planted in their worlds so our readers get involved and forget they're reading. Doc needs to talk to his patients, but the caregiver should visit her clients. Small difference that makes the characters more believable.

So! This is why they say to write what you know. How can I fix this? I can't know everything. But!! I do know others. Asking a lawyer to read a client-lawyer meeting scene and point out the things they would never say or do really opened my eyes. And when all else fails, I turn to Internet Communities. Help is just a click a way, sometimes.

They say it takes a community to raise a family, but I guess, it takes a few communities to write a book, and make a sock bun, and look professional at a meeting... 
Any insider lingo that had you stumped? How do you get around it?

This cool book I read has some neat examples of insider lingo

Ghosts on the Prairies' Home

Me signing one of my contracts. It's been a busy year.
Bootleggers, slavery, fools in sheets, spirits, shifty tunnel runners, even exploding churches!

I am so excited to announce that I found the perfect home for Ghosts on the Prairies at Elsewhen Press. (Happy dance it out with me, my friends!! Whoohoo.)

It will be published this year in digital and print editions.

Here is a link to the Press Release announcing the good news. I am excited to work with them on this Sacred Land Story and if you check out their site you'll see why. Ghosts on the Prairies will be right at home among some pretty cool books... well, until you take it home with you to hang with your awesome books, that is!!

In the Press Release, Al Murray, Managing Publisher of Elsewhen Press says “Using a light touch, Tanya’s story draws on spiritual beliefs and mystical traditions and deals with the dark, lingering shadow of slavery; with racism, sexual abuse and religious intolerance; with the corrosive effects of all-consuming greed; with exploitation; and with the clash of cultures, concerning the nature of ownership.”

About Elsewhen Press
Elsewhen Press is an independent publisher of Speculative Fiction. Based in the UK, in the South East of England, Elsewhen Press publishes titles in English in digital and print editions, adopting a digital-first policy for most titles and a digital-only policy for some. Elsewhen Press is an imprint of Alnpete Limited.