Writing Glitch 1079

Today’s glitch:

Disinterested and uninterested do not mean the same thing; in this context, you want the latter.

Begin a new paragraph whenever the speaker/person acting changes.

Paperwork is one word, not two.

When only two characters are speaking, it’s neither necessary nor desirable to use attributions for every line of dialogue.

Although it’s possible to sigh while speaking, and sighing does affect the sound of the speaker’s voice, it makes more sense to limit sigh as a speech verb for short sentences (the sort that can be easily spoken on one breath). In the example, the sigh works fine… as separate from speaking.

As you make your way through a checkpoint on the space station, you stop at a booth manned by a bored alien.

Not looking up from its paperwork, it asks uninterestedly, “Name?”

You reply in the same tone. “Legal or preferred?”

“Legal.”

You sigh. “Experiment J35-59DKO-B.”

 

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About Thomas Weaver

For several years, I’ve been putting my uncanny knack for grammar and punctuation, along with an eclectic mental collection of facts, to good use as a Wielder of the Red Pen of Doom (editor). I'm physically disabled, and I currently live 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 eight cats. 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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