All posts by D.T. Nova

I hate political ads

I think one of the main reasons why people get more annoyed by ads when watching videos online than when watching broadcast/cable television (and certainly my reason) is because the former has no real filter against repeating the same ad too close together.

Watching just one episode on Crunchyroll, I just saw the same ad seven times; three times in one break; and yes, literally twice in a row. Which is worse than usual but not unprecedented.

Except this time the ad being repeated so many times was the worst kind of ad; a political ad funded by a superPAC.

(I started to dissect the horrible content of the ad itself, but it’s not worth the amount of time it would take to finish. It was simply a particularly extreme example of how ads for horrible candidates are often full of euphemisms and dysphemisms so inaccurate that they should be considered false advertising and slander respectively. And it told me exactly what I need to know to vote against the jackass it was for.)

Authors Answer 135 – Authors’ Biggest Failures

My writing pace has varied from “cheetah” to “glacier”.

I Read Encyclopedias for Fun

Everyone fails at something. I failed to post the Authors Answer for the last two weeks. But I was on a trip in Japan. Since we are talking about writing, authors tend to have plenty of failures, right? That’s what we’re talking about. How bad can it get?

Question 135 – What is your biggest writing failure?

H. Anthe Davis

If you mean the piece I did worst on, I’d say my Book 1. Even after years and years of development, I still feel like I pushed it out too early, with several issues still unresolved. I just really wanted to get it out there, and ignored some critique in order to do so. I’ve since gone back and amended that, and will be republishing the book soon, but I still wish I’d waited. If you mean my biggest writing failing, as in what I do badly… I think I…

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Authors Answer 134 – Are Authors Organised?

And yet some of the most important stuff is still only in my head.

I Read Encyclopedias for Fun

Are authors organised? Many authors take notes, but not all do. Some authors have colour-coded pens, post-it notes, and different notebooks for different things. Some use paper, some use computer spreadsheets. Everyone has their own way. This week, we’re talking about how we organise our notes.

Question 134 – How do you organise your notes?

Beth Aman

For my first novel, I had a spiral notebook that held everything – all my plot ideas, scenes, characters, sketches.  For actual plotting, however, I used 3×5 notecards.  Each one had a major plot point on it, and I lined them all up on a wall in my room.  Then I could add other notecards underneath with further explanations or questions, and I could easily re-arrange my plot points.  It was a great visual, and I liked it better having it up on a wall instead of having it on a computer screen. …

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Authors Answer 133 – The Passive Voice

Active voice isn’t better than passive in all situations.

I Read Encyclopedias for Fun

The passive voice is something authors are often told not to use. But what exactly is the passive voice? Here’s a simple example.

Passive voice: The door was opened by John.

Active voice: John opened the door.

When you look at the two sentences, the active voice seems more dynamic. There’s actual movement. The passive voice is talking more about the door rather than John. In active, someone does something. For passive, something is done to something by someone or something. But is it something we should avoid using? Obviously, it shouldn’t be used when action is the focus of a scene. This week, we talk about the passive voice.

Question 133 – Do you find it difficult not to use passive voice? What advice would you give to writers who have this difficulty?

Elizabeth Rhodes

I do slip into it sometimes for reasons I can’t explain. I suppose for…

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Authors Answer 132 – The Oxford Comma

Please don’t make Stalin a stripper.

I Read Encyclopedias for Fun

What is the Oxford comma? I found this definition:

a comma used after the penultimate item in a list of three or more items, before ‘and’ or ‘or’ (e.g. an Italian painter, sculptor, and architect ).

Sounds simple, doesn’t it? But why is it such a controversial topic? Is it important to use the Oxford comma? Is it even needed? In many cases, it’s absolutely required to avoid confusion. It’s not always needed in every list, but should we be using it? We talk about that this week.

Question 132 – Do you use the Oxford comma? Why or why not? Give your own example where you would need to use the Oxford comma.

Tracey Lynn Tobin

I do use the Oxford comma, and I personally think everyone should. For one thing, we really should have a set rule so that it stops being such a constant debate. For another…

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