Canon vs Cannon: Vampires, not Guns

If you were on twitter this morning (NZ time) you might have caught me on my high horse again. As long as that horse is still living, I’m gonna keep flogging it, it seems.

Who else is having dirty thoughts right now? Just me? Alright, let’s continue.

In my bloggy travels this morning I came across a particular spelling error that sets my teeth on edge, makes me cringe, and generally sends me flying to twitter with my rant firmly in tow.

OMFG PEOPLE!!! CANON! Not cannon. For the fucking millionth time!!!

Oh yes, I was in fine form, as you can see.

Yes, there is a difference, and quite a marked difference. I’ve been asked exactly what that difference is on many occasions, and here we have it:

Canon = vampires

the-cullens

Cannon = a bloody great gun

TsarCannon

Okay, so even that could be a little confusing. Cannons are always bloody great guns (unless you’re in the Harry Potter fandom, and then I believe they could be a Quiddich team? But we’re not, so unless you’re writing Civil War era or similar, I’d be very surprised to see anything resembling a cannon in your twific), but canon doesn’t necessarily mean vampires outside of the Twilight fandom.

So I went dictionarying.
(I’m picking out the appropriate bits, feel free to clicky to see the entire entry)

dictionary.com

Canon:
– the works of an author that have been accepted as authentic: There are 37 plays in the Shakespeare canon.
– ( often plural )
a principle or accepted criterion applied in a branch of learning or art
– a list of writings, esp sacred writings, officially recognized as genuine
– a list of the works of an author that are accepted as authentic

[Old English, from Latin, from Greek kanōn rule, rod for measuring,standard; related to kanna reed, cane]

Apart from the above, there’s a whole bunch about church law and stuff. No bloody great guns, interestingly.

Cannon:
– a mounted gun for firing heavy projectiles; a gun, howitzer, or mortar.

[from Old French canon, from Italian cannone cannon, large tube, from canna tube, cane]

Well that was pretty much about the size of it. Some confusion can perhaps be gained from the fact that the part of a bit that goes in a horses mouth is called both cannon bit and canon bit. Also, interestingly enough both words seem like they may have come from the same place (cane).

But, no mention of guns in the ‘canon’ entry, and no mention of authenticity in the ‘cannon’ entry.

Oxford Dictionaries Online

Canon:
…a general law, rule, principle, or criterion by which something is judged…

A whole 3 entries on this page, and that is right there at the top.

Cannon:
– (plural usually same) a large, heavy piece of artillery, typically mounted on wheels, formerly used in warfare.

Guns and some stuff about billiards and snooker on this page.

So where do the vampires come in??

I was getting bored with all that dictionary stuff anyway *yawn*

Well, you know up there where it says something about ‘the works of an author that have been accepted as authentic’ in the canon definition? Well those works, for those of us writing Twilight fanfiction, are obviously that of Stephenie Meyer. The Twilight Saga, to be specific. Funnily enough, The Twilight Saga has vampires in it! No! You don’t say!

*nods* Yep. So, if you’re describing a fic as CANON*, there better be vampires.

If you’re describing a fic as CANNON, there had better be fucking big guns.

*because the unfortunate misuse I witnessed this morning was more than just a spelling error, I must say again that canon pairing does not equal canon fic. Please, describe it as a ‘canon pairing fic’, but do not describe it as a ‘canon fic’. You’ll just look like a twit. And make me blog about it yet again. This horse is dead, and I’m done flogging. Kthxbai.


Just before I go, I’m going to remind you to go vote in The Slash Awards (Lost Boys got nom’d! SQUEE!!) and let you know that The Twifestivals (for lesser-known twislash) is taking nominations as of tomorrow. That concludes tonight’s pimpage.

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2 responses to “Canon vs Cannon: Vampires, not Guns

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