Writing Glitch #93

Today’s glitch:


He had finally arrived in the City. He was currently dressed as a female and needed a place to stay, but, judging by the ogling he was getting from the local pond life, he didn’t think that would be a problem.

It was a good job he had a sense of humor and a well-paying boss.

Please notice the comma after but as well as the comma before it. The second comma is used because the conjunction is followed immediately by a parenthetical phrase requiring its own commas to set it apart from the rest of the sentence.

Please also notice the hyphen in well-paying. The rule here is that a combination of adjective and participle (that’s the -ing word) functioning together as a single adjective before a noun gets hyphenated.

This sample feels as if it belongs to the sort of story where City is capitalized because that’s what everyone in the story calls it, as if that’s its proper name: just the City. Normally, however, city should be lowercase.


About Thomas Weaver

I’m a writer and editor who got into professional editing almost by accident years ago when a friend from university needed someone to copyedit his screenplay about giant stompy robots (mecha). Having discovered that I greatly enjoy this kind of work, I’ve been putting my uncanny knack for grammar and punctuation, along with an eclectic mental collection of facts, to good use ever since as a Wielder of the Red Pen of Doom. I'm physically disabled, and for the past several years, I’ve lived with my smugly good-looking twin Paul, who writes military science fiction and refuses to talk about his military service because he can’t. Sometimes Paul and I collaborate on stories, and sometimes I just edit whatever he writes. It's worked out rather well so far. My list of non-writing-related jobs from the past includes librarian, art model, high school teacher, science lab gofer… Although I have no spouse or offspring to tell you about, I do have six cats. (The preferred term is "Insane Cat Gentleman.") I currently spend my time blogging, reading, editing, and fending off cats who like my desk better than my twin’s.
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4 Responses to Writing Glitch #93

  1. Sheron says:

    Isn’t the last sentence a run-on? It was a good job. He had a sense of humor and a well-paying boss. Or…It was a good job; he had a sense of humor and a well-paying boss.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I understand the confusion, but in this case “good job” is a colloquialism meaning “good thing” or “fortunate situation.” The character could have said (if narrating in first person), “I was lucky to have a sense of a humor and a well-paying boss.” Does that explanation makes sense?


  2. Sheron says:

    Ahh… Sort of. Is it more of a British expression?


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