Grammar Repair Shop

Filler up!

January 9, 2020 Categorized in: Grammar Repair ShopSpeaking

We all use filler words, or vocal disfluencies, in our daily speech. The junk food of the applied linguistics world, they come off as sloppy and faltering. We should try to banish them, especially from our professional speech as much as possible. Right? Well, not necessarily.
Many purists might cling to the rule that if you’re not using Band-Aid brand bandages, then don’t call them Band-Aids. But there are many everyday items that are better known for their brand names rather than their generic names.
Write it right, say it right, spell it right.

Choose just the right word

December 5, 2019 Categorized in: Grammar Repair Shop

Learn the difference between five similar pairs of words.
Commas are intended to help the reader comprehend a sentence more easily. Unnecessary ones are a distraction. Here are three places not to put a comma, from Barron’s Essentials of English.
Parallelism brings consistent grammatical construction to each part of a sentence, making it friendlier to the ear.
YOLO! That’s You Only Live Once. However, the correct phrase should be You Live Only Once. Let’s take a look at what can happen to a sentence when you move the word only around.
From @APStylebook, a Twitter feed run by the Associated Press, some very handy hints from recent online chats, collected by PR Newswire.

Which word should I use?

March 7, 2019 Categorized in: Grammar Repair Shop

Here are five potential confusers.
Most grammar mistakes can be avoided if you have the discipline to re-read your work before printing, submitting or pressing send, so put these reminders from experienced copywriter Hayley Mullen to use next time you sit down to put your thoughts in writing.
With so much written content available, it’s even more important to write well so you can communicate effectively, says MarketingProfs Chief Content Officer Ann Handley.
You know the basic rules of capitalization, but there are fine points and examples that puzzle even our most skilled readers.

Portmanteaus to the rescue

September 26, 2018 Categorized in: Grammar Repair Shop

Here is a list of words you may be surprised are actually portmanteaus.