Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Editing for Grammarphobes: Homonyms

While surfing the web for interesting grammar tidbits this morning, I came upon a tremendous find: “All About Homonyms,” by Alan Cooper. Although it is an older site, Cooper provides one of the most extensive list of homonyms I have ever seen.


To review, homonyms are words that sound alike, but are spelled differently and have different meanings.


Here are a few I noticed on Cooper’s list. At least one will shock you.


auger: a part of a drill
augur: to predict from signs or omens (verb), a soothsayer (noun)


aural: relating to hearing or the ear
oral: of the mouth


plural: more than one
pleural: the cavity that surrounds the lungs


stationary: not moving
stationery: materials for writing or typing, such as pens, paper and ink, or letter paper with matching envelopes


sundae: an ice cream dessert
Sunday: day of the week


Okay, did you know stationery is how you spell the word for matching writing paper? I remembered it vaguely somewhere among the cobwebs of my middle-aged mind, but it is misspelled so frequently, I thought I was nuts. I double checked it with Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary, and sure enough, Cooper is correct.




A Call Out for Comedy


This week wraps up Anything Goes! month for “Flash Fiction Fridays.” February’s Romance theme is shaping up to feature some great stories next month.


However, it is winter in Chicago. As I look ahead to March, traditionally a month that provides one teaser day of warmer temperatures and clear blue sky, followed the next by a blizzard and six inches of snow, I cannot help but think, “Ha, ha. Very funny.”  I need a good laugh during the month of March, so I am happy to announce the March "Flash Fiction Fridays" theme is Comedy. 


Let’s have some fun! 


Please submit your stories, 500 words or less, to karen@karenberner.com by February 28. Put "Flash Fiction Fridays" in the subject line and include a short bio with your story. Also, please remember to sign up to follow Bibliophilic Blather, so we can build our online writing community. 


Thanks. I look forward to reading your work.

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