Adam “Ape Lad” Koford’s Laugh-Out-Loud Cats say it all for me.
Kitteh’s statement to Pip refers to the old canard that the Inuit language has a hundred or thousand or ten thousand words for snow, depending on who’s talking. Said canard gave birth to the linguistic fact of the snowclone. The Wikipedia article is a nice, tight piece about the history of the snowclone and some of the more common ones; you’ll undoubtedly recognize many of them.
The snowclone is both a useful shorthand and a cliché. Like all clichés, it has to be handled with great care lest it fall flat on your readers’ ears. If you use a snowclone formula in a new way, however, it can sparkle.
The Snowclone Database is your source for all things snowclone. (In fact, that phrase might count as a snowclone: “your source for all things X.”)
When you get your fill of other snow activities (I’m done!), you can play around with some snowclones in the warmth of the Great Indoors.
IN UNRELATED NEWS: A month after they were announced, here is the Write to Done list of Top 10 Blogs for Writers for 2011. I’ll let the writers speak for themselves.