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Showing posts from November, 2018

Thanksgiving Wishes

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POSTED BY KAREN WOJCIK BERNER
Every Wednesday, Editing for Grammarphobes 2.0 features handy tips to enhance all of our writing, from daily emails to articles to books. After all, everyone needs to write, right?
This post originally ran on November 23, 2016.



I tried to find grammar issues with Thanksgiving words, but there are very few besides cornucopia, which is spelled with a surprising “u,” and that the plural of potato takes an “e,” so it is potatoes
When I was young, I loved the story of Thanksgiving. Our teachers omitted many crucial details about the zealousness and cruelty of the pilgrims, and I was led to believe everything was lovely as they and Native Americans came together for a unity meal. It’s irresponsible to whitewash history, so click here to read what really happened.
Ugh.
As an adult, I’ve come to fashion the holiday as a time to give thanks for what we have. 
Being a writer and editor means I get to work from home, which is pretty great most of the time. The one dr…

Editing for Grammarphobes: A Little Dash Here and There

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POSTED BY KAREN WOJCIK BERNER


Every Wednesday, Editing for Grammarphobes 2.0 features handy tips to enhance all of our writing, from daily emails to articles to books. After all, everyone needs to write, right?





Although there are several kinds of dashes, each differing in length, the most common are the em dash and the en dash, named so because of what size they were back in the typesetting days. Em dash is as long as an “m”; en dash takes up the same amount of space as an “n.” 


Here are a few common ways they are used.


Em dashes denote a sudden break in thought that causes an abrupt change in sentence structure, according toThe Chicago Manual of Style.


“Will Mitchell Trubisky — can he — complete the passes necessary to beat the Vikings on Sunday night?” 


They also can be used in dialogue when the speech of one character is interrupted by another. 


“I’m not sure,” he answered cautiously. “I think he also needs —”


“Needs what?” she interrupted impatiently. “Of course he can lead the Bears to v…

Weather Words

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POSTED BY KAREN WOJCIK BERNER



Every Wednesday, Editing for Grammarphobes 2.0 features handy tips to enhance all of our writing, from daily emails to articles to books. After all, everyone needs to write, right?




As I write this week’s Editing for Grammarphobes, gusts of wind shake russet leaves from their branches, and I’m reminded winter cannot be far behind for Chicagoland. Today we’re talking about weather terms—what they mean and how to use them. Some of these might seem familiar, but they are actually specifically defined in the United States by the National Weather Service and are misused on a regular basis.

First off, let’s start with the term, weatherman, which is sexist and outdated. The Associated Press Stylebook (AP) states that the preferred term is weather forecaster.

Here are more weather words for you to consider.

Blizzard

Obviously, a blizzard is an intense snowstorm, but before weather forecasters use that actual term, the National Weather Service categorizes it as “havi…