Writing Glitch #192

Today’s glitch:


What we have here is a failure to use proper noun-verb agreement… Context alone doesn’t make it clear whether the writer meant to be talking about one girl or more than one.

“And when you’re the girl who’s known for being invisible, there’s nothing quite as scary as being seen.”


“And when you’re the girls who’re known for being invisible, there’s nothing quite as scary as being seen.”

I have to assume invisible is meant to be taken more-or-less literally, because invisible meaning unnoticed doesn’t fit with known for. (People who are unnoticed to the point of being effectively invisible don’t have a reputation for anything, do they? “Hey, have you heard about that kid no one ever notices or even thinks about?” *shakes head*)


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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2 Responses to Writing Glitch #192

  1. Writing glitch aside, is there any point in reading about girl, known for being invisible, who is suddenly seen? By whom? What is so scary about being seen? Pardon my questions but sometimes I do not understand why writers write the things they do. I am reminded of an old SNL skit where someone asked, “What if all girls had beagle faces?” Okay, what if they did?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I don’t understand why some writers choose bland or ridiculous “what if?” scenarios, either. I think the biggest problem is not thinking through the implications of the idea: WHY would all girls have beagle faces? Has it always been this way, or did something happen recently to cause it? If all girls have beagle faces, doesn’t that mean that all beagles have the same faces as young women? It’s still a ridiculous idea, but giving it context at least means there’s a story (that I wouldn’t want to edit) in it somewhere.

      On the other hand, being seen IS scary for some people. I speak from experience here, although I’ve never been invisible. 🙂


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