Writing Glitch #302

Today’s second glitch:


Y’know, shoes are for wearing. Unless there’s something else the character is supposed to do with the shoes to make them perform their magic, there’s no need to say they give him this ability only if he wears them.

He had a very special pair of shoes that permitted him to walk in another universe.

If you really, really want to keep the original wording intact for some strange reason (maybe polishing the shoes causes a different magical effect from wearing them, and you want to make the distinction), this is how to punctuate it: He had a very special pair of shoes, ones that, if he wore them, permitted him to walk in another universe.


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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One Response to Writing Glitch #302

  1. I’m glad you offered both examples. Writers may have a specific reason for their wording. It may have, to the writer, sounded poetic. I applaud your open mind on this one.


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