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Archive for the ‘Grammar and Language’ Category

A215 has officially started now.

I’ve read Chapter One of the BRB today and this week I will practice clusters  and freewriting for 20 minutes every day. I have the best intentions.

I loved freewriting, but I find clusters difficult, as I have a voice in the back of my mind saying ‘this is pointless and is doing no good’. I do think they will be useful if you hit a wall in the middle of a story, though, or for expanding themes when redrafting.

Other writing-related things I’m planning are:

  • Finish Stephen King’s On Writing. I started reading it yesterday and it’s very useful.
  • Make a second draft of the story I’m working on. I will do this once I’ve finished reading King’s book, as it seems to offer advice which will be helpful for my redraft.
  • Begin to think about eTMA01, which is due three weeks on Friday. Perhaps start working on something, as it’s not the end of the world if I end up with a couple of potential eTMAs to choose from.
  • Read some anonymous manuscripts and make constructive comments for Writers’ Group on Wednesday. (Don’t panic, OU people, this has nothing to do with A215).

Non writing-related plans include:

  • Closely monitoring knee in advance of the Birmingham Half Marathon on Sunday. Last Sunday I ran ten miles and aggravated an old injury, so I’m halting training to allow the knee to fix itself as much as possible before October 11th. Cripes… I’m worried that taking two weeks off training immediately before the half is a bad idea, but surely my fitness levels can’t plummet significantly, right? I will finish this race.
  • Cooking vegan-friendly meal for vegan friend on Tuesday. I’m thinking red lentil dahl.
  • Buy a ‘Congratulations on your engagement’ card for a friend. She’s 22 years old. Try not to write ‘Please don’t do this’ on the card.

Other things I am thinking about:

  • I have bought a book: Rediscover Grammar by David Crystal. They seem to have tried to make grammar seem fun by including ‘amusing’ cartoons throughout. If I ever open it, I’ll let you know whether it’s any good.
  • My computer is stubborn and refuses to load FirstClass. It’s definitely a problem with the computer itself, as FC operates properly on my work computer. I think my computer is missing some files, and refuses to download any Windows Updates. I’m currently weighing up two options: paying £35 for a complete service of a very old computer or buying a new one.
  • I’m thinking about trying to stop watching TV (except Coronation Street, which doesn’t count as ‘TV’, as it’s a Way of Life). It would mean I could do more reading and writing. I’m reluctant, though, because I do like to switch off my brain sometimes and TV is a good way of doing that.

Martini time.. 🙂

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Passive Voice

Creative writing literature often advises writers to avoid using the passive voice.

Luckily, WordPress has a feature, part of the spell check, which recognises passive voice and underlines it so you can change your language.

I hope this will help, as I was never taught the difference between passive and active voice. I still don’t understand what it is and how to avoid being passive.

Does anyone else understand this and / or could recommend any resources which could help me?

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