This language of ours certainly isn’t easy! It’s been known to cause logophobia, defined as “an excessive fear of words.” For example, consider the following statements, each of which uses two words which are spelled the same but have different pronunciations and meanings: 1) The bandage was wound around … [Read more...] about Logophobia – and Other Diseases!
Archives for 2018
Today, most people probably relate the word scoop to ice cream or sherbet. Given the fact that Americans consume more than one billion gallons of ice cream and other frozen delicacies a year, that’s understandable. However, the scoop we’re referring to is a media term that’s been around for more than a century. Over … [Read more...] about The Straight Scoop!
Just recently, I came across an old friend I haven’t had much to do with in recent years. On second thought, I’m not sure I can call someone I’ve never met a friend, even though the addiction or obsession we share makes him seem like one. His name is Gyles Brandreth. Born in England, he was educated at Oxford … [Read more...] about The Joy of Lex
If you proofread your written material yourself, or if you do some proofing for others, here are some of the more common errors to watch for: Poor grammar: Misusing its and it’s (latter always and only means it is or it has) I feel badly (should be bad) Where I’m at (delete at) Off of (delete of) … [Read more...] about The Proofreader’s Role
In a newspaper article titled "The Art of Schmoozing," one of the people interviewed by the reporter was quoted as saying: "A lot of our organization is built around networking, which means that we’re built around schmoozing." In his wonderful book, "The Joys of Yiddish" (among my all-time favorites), Leo Rosten … [Read more...] about Schmoozing? Or Losing?
"You only write regularly if you’re willing to write badly. You can’t write regularly and well. One should accept bad writing as a way of priming the pump, a warm-up exercise that allows you to write well.” ~ Jennifer Egan (Pulitzer Prize winner) He was a British author who could have had no idea of the dubious fame … [Read more...] about Celebrating Bad Writing
So what’s this stuff about English being easy? Consider the fact that we have one little two-letter word in our language that has dozens of meanings and can be used as an adverb, adjective, preposition and noun. That word is “UP.” It’s easy to understand UP, meaning toward the sky, or at the top of the list, but … [Read more...] about What’s Up?
Do bank tellers close their windows just before it’s your turn? Do panhandlers on the street offer you money? Were you on Mother Teresa’s enemies list? If you answered “Yes” to any of these questions, consider the following: “Xvxn though thx kxyboard on my old computxr has startxd to show a lot of wxar and txar, … [Read more...] about Feeling Unappreciated?
“Be yourself and your readers will follow you anywhere. Try to commit an act of writing and they will jump overboard to get away.” ~ William Zinsser As I was just saying, (OK, it was way back on May 25), preparing a book proposal “can be almost as difficult and time-consuming as writing the book itself.” Now, nearly … [Read more...] about Completed at Last