3 Examples of Misplaced Modifiers

Daily Writing Tips

n each of the following examples, placement of a phrase obfuscates the sentence’s narrative flow. Original post: 3 Examples of Misplaced Modifiers. Discussion and a revision follow each sentence.

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3 More Examples of Misplaced Modifiers

Daily Writing Tips

Here, both refers to not only the verb protect (and the noun that follows) but also the verb enable (and the noun phrase that follows), so it must precede both verbs: “The agency should work to both protect the environment and enable a growing economy.”.

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3 Examples of How a Comma Can Change Meaning

Daily Writing Tips

Omission of a lowly comma often alters the intent of a sentence, as demonstrated in the following examples, each followed by discussion and a revision. Original post: 3 Examples of How a Comma Can Change Meaning.

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How to Refer to Monetary Amounts

Daily Writing Tips

How should references to amounts of money be styled? Casual, isolated references, as well as approximations, are generally spelled out, as in the examples below: “I’m just putting in my two cents’ worth.”. A casual reference can read “1.6

5 Examples of Repetition and Redundancy

Daily Writing Tips

In each of the following sentences, repetition of words or phrases or redundant use of similar terms is easily eliminated, as described in the explanations and shown in the revisions that follow each example. We often refer to this type of test as purple-team testing.

5 Examples of How Hyphens Help

Daily Writing Tips

One could refer to informed decisions that are better, but that’s not quite what is meant here. The reference is to decisions that are better informed, so the phrasal adjective should be hyphenated: “It’s unfortunate that she didn’t make better-informed decisions.”.

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3 Types of Awkward References to Numbers

Daily Writing Tips

Also, two numbers in numeral form should not appear in sequence, as in this example in which an age is followed by a count: “The day the slain woman was to turn 28, 3,000 people gathered at a church to recall her life.” Original Post: 3 Types of Awkward References to Numbers.

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5 Examples of Confused Sentences

Daily Writing Tips

The following five sentences illustrate various ways in which the wrong word order or choice of phrasing can obfuscate meaning; discussion and a revision follows each example. When writers neglect to take sufficient care in forming sentences, confusion and error can easily result.

5 Examples of Extraneous Hyphens

Daily Writing Tips

Although confusion is not at great risk in phrases like “sharp-dressed man” (though the omission of the hyphen suggests that the passage literally refers to a dressed man who is sharp) others, such as “small-business owner,” can at the very least conjure distracting imagery if they omit the hyphen. Here are examples of superfluous usage: 1. Original Post: 5 Examples of Extraneous Hyphens. Hyphens are helpful little things that aid in reader comprehension.

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Answers to Questions About Hyphens in References to Age

Daily Writing Tips

The rules about references to age, and the proper use of hyphens in such references, are simple yet easily misunderstood. For example, “My three-year-old was too young for the movie” is hyphenated, while “He is three years old” is not, or at least I don’t think it is.

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Punctuation Quiz #19: Hyphenation in References to Numbers

Daily Writing Tips

For each pair of sentences below, choose the one that correctly inserts or omits a hyphen in a reference to a numerical quantity or proportion. Original post: Punctuation Quiz #19: Hyphenation in References to Numbers.

5 Examples of the Need for Multiple Hyphenation

Daily Writing Tips

These examples demonstrate the proper application of hyphens in such cases. Hyphenation errors frequently occur in references to age or duration. As styled, the central phrase seems to refer to threatening injuries not associated with life.

How to Refer to Former and Future States

Daily Writing Tips

In reference to people who are no longer in a particular position or profession, the most common wording, for example, is “former stockbroker John Smith” or “ex-stockbroker John Smith.” Original Post: How to Refer to Former and Future States.

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How to Punctuate References to Dates and Times

Daily Writing Tips

Where do the commas go in references to days, months, years, and time of day? The same form is correct for referring to a holiday during a certain year: “I haven’t seen her since Christmas 2005.” However, as in the second example in the second paragraph, the combination of day, date, and time requires organizational punctuation: “The meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, August 31, at 7 p.m.”. Original Post: How to Punctuate References to Dates and Times.

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Instant Customer Data Analysis using Excel: worked example


In this article I will share with you a simple 7-step plan based on a fully worked example of Customer Data Analysis using Excel. For a copy of the worked example excel spreadsheet containing all the formula please email me. Step 4 - Perform the Cross-Reference Analysis.

How to Refer to Governmental Administrative Bodies

Daily Writing Tips

The formal style for Cabinet-level departments is “the Department of State,” for example, though journalistic style often up-ends this form as, for instance, “the State Department.” Some departments are also recognized by their initials (DOJ for “Department of Justice,” for example), though abbreviations should be used only on second reference (an editing term that actually means “all subsequent references”), after the name is spelled out the first time it is used.

5 Cases of Premature Reference

Daily Writing Tips

Writers occasionally fall into the trap of inserting too much information between a verb and its object, or introducing a pronoun before the noun it refers to has appeared — in effect, alluding to the point of the sentence before specifying it.

5 Examples of Proper Style for Proper Nouns

Daily Writing Tips

Here are five examples of proper nouns that illustrate the importance of verifying precise nomenclature and considering the context in which it is used. However, popularly, the phrase generally refers to the clock in the tower or the tower itself.

Answers to Questions About Referring to Death

Daily Writing Tips

Here are three questions about how to treat references to people who have died, and my responses. A widow or widower referring to a deceased spouse, however, gets a lifetime pass.). Original Post: Answers to Questions About Referring to Death.

How Should You Refer to a Cultural Era?

Daily Writing Tips

However, capitalizing Sixties creates an inconsistency if, in the same document or in other issues of the same publication, other single-word references to decades are correctly treated generically, with no contextual emphasis: “The people who became prominent in this era were born during the forties.” But most writers and editors — including me — would accept adjacent references to “the Roaring Twenties” and “the thirties” without question, so this style is my preference.

Simplify Reference Material With the Four Laws of Simplicity

Simple Productivity Blog

Now we’ll take a look at how to apply them to reference material. Simplify Reference Material With the Four Laws of Simplicity. Reference material has a tendency to expand. Divide your reference material into current and archive along these lines. The question for organization is first about how you are going to store your reference material. If you have a physical office where you do most of your work, paper reference material can work for you.

Should a Company Be "It" or "We"?

Business Writing

In the past week, two clients have written to ask whether they should refer to their company or division using the singular it or a plural pronoun. Below are their examples, slightly disguised.

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Twitter Fiction. Really!

Daily Writing Tips

It can, for example, provide a stream of links to useful web pages or it can enable writers to keep in touch with editors, publishers or other writers. Posts By Email Grab The RSS Home Archives About Contact Tests Book Twitter Fiction. Really!

The Tower, The Village, The Path, and The Way


Like time spent on social media, for example. Latest blog post: A Different Take on Boxing Day braincutlery 5pts I can totally sympathise with this, particularly the reference to KOTOR (which Im currently replaying on my Mac). Productivityist.com by Mike Vardy Start Here Archives Store Contact The Tower, The Village, The Path, and The Way Posted on 12/21/2012 // 8 Comments One of the best books I read this year didn’t cost me a dime.

Idioms Referring to Colors of the Rainbow

Daily Writing Tips

Because of the association of the color red with danger and deficits, most idioms that include the word red — for example, “in the red” (meaning “in debt”) “red tape” (referring to bureaucratic complications), and “seeing red” (being so angry that one’s vision is blurred) — have negative associations. Into the wild blue yonder,” meanwhile, refers to a venture into unknown territory.). Original Post: Idioms Referring to Colors of the Rainbow.

Fleshing Out and Flushing Out

Daily Writing Tips

Posts By Email Grab The RSS Home Archives About Contact Tests Book Fleshing Out and Flushing Out by Maeve Maddox Suzanne Baal notes: [an] error that I’ve been hearing lately is “flesh it out&# vs “flush it out&#.

“Bored with,” or “bored of”?

Daily Writing Tips

Here are some examples of nonstandard usage on the web: Is Robert Gibbs Getting Bored Of Being Press Secretary? Posts By Email Grab The RSS Home Archives About Contact Tests Book “Bored with,&# or “bored of&# ?

Using Subtotals Function in Microsoft Excel

Professional Assistant Blog

The spreadsheet might contain other types of data, but is similar to this example? checked (in this example).

Be Easy to Find: Use Your Name

Make or Break Moments

A number of references to your company, perhaps some LinkedIn answers, a blog comments or two? Did you also find a reference to a site that links directly to your name? Share your examples here.

Is She a “Lady” or a “Woman”?

Daily Writing Tips

I gave examples, through parallel terms the equality between male and female, woman and man, lady and gentleman. For example, policemen, lawyers, and newscasters often refer to men in criminal custody as “gentlemen.&#

Interview Questions and Answers for PAs, EAs and Admins Part 6

Practically Perfect PA

In my last blog I wrote about interview questions regarding career development and a few example answers. When asking a competency question the interviewer will ask you to give an example from your past experiences rather than answer in general terms.

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Ingenious vs. Ingenuous

Daily Writing Tips

Take, for example, the two words ingenious and ingenuous. Posts By Email Grab The RSS Home Archives About Contact Tests Book Ingenious vs. Ingenuous by Simon Kewin Be careful with ingenious and ingenuous. Sometimes a single letter can make a great deal of difference to the meaning of a word.

How to Organize Your Files With Cross Referencing

Ian's Messy Desk

That being said, cross referencing works for some people and certain fixed types of cross references are easy for anybody to use. Also, the development of tags as metadata for electronic data serves as a type of cross reference. There are Three Basic Ways to Cross References.

Bare Infinitive After Certain Verbs

Daily Writing Tips

An ESL speaker has two questions about the following construction: …I was startled to hear a local radio announcer refer to a contest for artists to submit designs to paint “murals” on storm drains. Refer is not inflected because it is not a main verb in this clause.

2015 21

Curbs and Sidewalks

Daily Writing Tips

English, the word sidewalk refers to a paved footpath alongside a street or a road. For us, “kerb&# refers specifically to the edge of the pavement (sidewalk), so one might possibly talk about “pavement stalls&# , but it would be odd to use “kerb&# in that way.

4 Keys for a Recommendation Letter

On The Job

For example, one applicant said that she had experience with project management. Remind your references of such situations -- they'll appreciate not having to dig through their own memories. Don't think that references can only come in the form of former employers or teachers.

2017 21

The Article “The” in Geographical Names

Daily Writing Tips

The following discussion lists categorical examples and explains why the is used with some designations and not others. This usage is apparently customary in Ontario, Canada, as well, and the British refer to their highways as “the A-1” and so on.).

2017 25

When to Capitalize Words for Points of the Compass

Daily Writing Tips

This post outlines the recommendations for when to use uppercase letters for words referring to cardinal directions, and when to employ lowercase letters. Examples include “North America,” “South Africa,” “West Virginia,” and “East St.

2016 28

Why Your Career Needs Reverse Mentoring

On The Job

When older workers witness young IT employees making workplace gaffes like referring to the CEO as “dude,” they may shake their heads and sigh, knowing that the young employees have a lot to learn. This can help, for example, if they’re developing a new product.

10 Tips for Clean, Clear Writing

Daily Writing Tips

For example, people don’t just walk: They lumber, march, or stroll. Adhering to the following guidance about usage, syntax, punctuation, style, and form will perceptibly improve the quality of your writing. Use vivid verbs.

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