I was looking through the files on my computer today in an effort to see what could stay and what could be banished to my desktop recycle bin. I have a lot of old documents that are no longer needed, so a good cleanout was long overdue. It was then that I came across some … Continue reading Repurposing Old Writings
For over two hundred years there has been controversy surrounding split infinitives and their usage in writing. To clarify, a split infinitive occurs when a word (almost always an adverb) is inserted between the ‘to’ and the verb in a sentence. Perhaps the most famous example of a split infinitive: “To boldly go (where no … Continue reading Split Infinitives: Should You Split Hairs Over Them?
There's nothing wrong with it - it's grammatically correct - but every time I write or read it, it feels wrong. I am talking about the phrase “and am”. For example: I am looking for some peace and quiet and am at the end of my rope. The aforementioned sentence is correct, but the juxtaposition of … Continue reading The Problem with “and am” in Writing
The serial comma, most commonly known as the Oxford comma or the Harvard comma, is used before a coordinating conjunction ('and' or 'or') in a list of three or more items in a list. For example: Cheddar, brie, and gorgonzola. The serial comma remains a controversial topic among grammar enthusiasts, some arguing that it is unnecessary … Continue reading Why You Should be Using the Serial Comma
In short, a conjunction is a word that connects two parts of a sentence (clauses) together. This is elementary knowledge that most of us know. However, at school, you may have been taught that a sentence cannot begin or end with a conjunction. The most common example called out is ‘and’: “And that’s where it … Continue reading Ending and Starting Sentences with Conjunctions
It might sound derivative, but it’s true nonetheless: writing is like a muscle; the more you flex it, the stronger it becomes. If you don't write on a regular basis, you'll suffer atrophy - a degeneration of strength and ability. As such, it's best to try and write every single day. "I don't always have … Continue reading Writing is a Muscle
Like every writer, the way I write has evolved over time. However, it only recently occurred to me how layered (and methodical) my process is. I am a pedant and I make no apologies. And although such a process may not be necessary in every circumstance, a more structured approach to my writing has proven … Continue reading The Writing Process and How to Develop One
‘I haven’t eaten anything all day,’ says Graham. ‘I’m literally starving.’ He shouldn’t have said it. ‘Actually,’ Nancy begins, head held high. ‘You’re figuratively starving’. Graham sighs. Here comes the lecture. ‘You ate this morning, Graham. You can’t literally be starving. I wish people would use literally and figuratively correctly. It isn’t very difficult! The … Continue reading Why it’s Okay to Use ‘Literally’ Figuratively