Monday, February 08, 2010
But of course, Anne Rice isn't honing in on religion. To hone is to sharpen, either literally (as with knives) or metaphorically (as with wit or skills). To focus attention is to home in on, and that is clearly the trite phrasing the author was going for here.
Some dictionaries have now starting including "to focus" as a second definition for hone, but that only means that so many careless writers have made the mistake that descriptivist lexicographers feel obliged to record it. Any writers worth their salt (900 mg of which can be ingested in a single Bacon N' Egger) who have honed their skills will continue to home in on the difference.