Writing Glitch #358

Today’s glitch:


It’s not grammatically incorrect, but using on twice in that first sentence makes the sentence rather clunky. That’s why I changed the first on to aboard (which sounds more nautical anyway).

The first word of the third sentence needs to be capitalized.

I changed the comma after PA system to a period because what precedes it works better as an associated action (some people call these “beats”) than as a dialogue tag.

The captain’s dialogue contains a comma splice. Change the comma after fallen to a period.

It’s pushing the limit of how large an exact (instead of rounded-off) number can be and still be spelled out instead of written as a numeral, but the number of remaining passengers does need to be expressed with words: five thousand, one hundred thirty-two, not 5,132.

You’ll also notice that I broke this example up into smaller paragraphs. A new paragraph should be started each time a new speaker is introduced or when, as some advice expresses it, “the camera moves.”

Someone is murdered aboard the cruise ship you’re on. Passengers are told to lock themselves in their cabins and await instructions.

The captain speaks from the ship’s PA system. “The first contestant has fallen. Only five thousand, one hundred thirty-two remain.”

With that, the doors all click and swing open.

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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3 Responses to Writing Glitch #358

  1. J.R. Handley says:

    Interesting idea for a slasher film, but I’ll pass on that cruise! Was it only three hours?

    Liked by 1 person

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