Talking Syntax

The Seven Deadly Sins, punctuation, the ins and outs of grammar

Laurel Shane’s ode to the apostrophe

The apostrophe has been giving writers trouble ever since it first appeared in English in the 16th century. But let’s not tear out our hair, let’s just bring about a new golden age in which we all know when to use an apostrophe—and when to leave it out. In that spirit, here are four of the most common places people unnecessarily insert apostrophes….

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In the weeds (aka lay v. lie)

When the late William Safire wrote a New York Times column with a sentence that began “Another reason I laid low was…” his readers pounced. He then wrote another column to clarify correct and incorrect uses of lay and lie. Here’s a gross paraphrase, to give you one more way to sort those two verbs out.

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Buy Atenolol Without Prescription, Nerds, jocks, and the great English makeover

Businesspeople speak it. Academics understand it. Johnny Depp steams it up.

English looks so hot today that it’s hard to imagine it as anything but the homecoming king of global languages. Order Atenolol from mexican pharmacy, But it wasn’t always so. Curious about the true story of our language’s past, I found myself studying a few musty old texts and contemplating Latin for the first time since high school, Buy Atenolol Without Prescription. That took me back. I soon realized that high school gave me a pretty good metaphor for what I was learning. For if, at turn of the 18th century, purchase Atenolol online no prescription, all European languages made up a high school, English was the kid with the thick glasses and the “Kick Me” sign on his back.

Milton was dead, Order Atenolol online overnight delivery no prescription, the Bible had already been translated, and English back then had no idea who he was anymore. Buy Atenolol Without Prescription, He had been copycatting that suave French senior for a while. An English-specific grammar and an adequate dictionary didn’t exist, so English never knew if he was saying the right thing. “We write by guess, Atenolol forum,” griped Thomas Stackhouse in 1731. And ever since the revolution—where Oliver Cromwell and the Roundheads beheaded the king in 1649, took power, Atenolol interactions, then made England realize that royalty wasn’t so bad after all—written English had been hanging out with the losers. The demand for revolutionary material had opened up publishing to the less educated, and the less educated made English look shoddy. Conclusion?  “Our language is in a manner barbarous,” John Dryden said in 1693, Buy Atenolol Without Prescription.

Latin was starting to look awfully good to English. Although he was long-gone from the scene, is Atenolol addictive, Latin’s picture still stood proudly in the hallway. He was the unforgettable class president who never had a hair or verb ending out of place. People were still saying what a smooth talker he was. Everything Buy Atenolol Without Prescription, sounded better when Latin said it; for Pete’s sake, little sayings of his had been engraved into the walls all over the school. Ordering Atenolol online, As if nature hadn’t blessed him enough, Latin was also a first-rate athlete. He oozed confidence with all those unimpeachable rules, hard as a set of washboard abs. Everybody who was anybody looked to Latin as a language guide, Atenolol dangers. On bad days, English would spend time staring at Latin’s cocky, immortal grin.

An idea formed, Buy Atenolol Without Prescription. Online buying Atenolol hcl, What if English were to become more like Latin?  If somebody could create a set of rules—a unique English grammar—to keep the riffraff from corrupting the language, English could earn some respect, and maybe even see his own picture up in the hallway one day. Writers applauded the idea because they wanted English to be understandable to subsequent generations. Politicians liked the idea because they wanted England to signal its independence from the continent by rejecting the universal grammar that other European languages used, Atenolol overnight. Just about everyone assumed that English could be fixed and frozen just like Latin—as if Latin hadn’t changed at all in its lifetime. Buy Atenolol Without Prescription, The great English makeover began.

Robert Lowth, clergyman and future bishop of London, Canada, mexico, india, assumed the role of coach. He took a long look at English, from clumsy prepositions to flabby verbs, and declared that the language needed “stiffening up.”  He wrote A Short Introduction to English Grammar in 1762, which took a top-down, online Atenolol without a prescription, prescriptive approach, explaining how English should work rather than how it did. His book outsold the other grammars on the scene, Low dose Atenolol, some of which—gasp!—honored the reality of English speech.

When Lowth settled questions about language, he tended to look to the tongue of Caesar rather than the traditions of his local team members. What did last-picked, acne-riddled English know anyway?  Lowth frowned on the expression, “It is me,” which was natural to English speakers then and now, because it ended in the objective case, Buy Atenolol Without Prescription. “It is I,” on the other hand, buy cheap Atenolol, matched the Latin construction ego sum—where ego is a subject, not an object or a “me”—and was therefore better, according to Lowth, Atenolol mg, but awkward for anyone who has ever answered a telephone.

Always mindful of the old class president, Lowth looked to Latin when it came to prepositions, too. “The placing of the preposition before the relative is more graceful, Atenolol trusted pharmacy reviews,” he wrote, “and agrees much better with the solemn and elevated style.”  The rule worked well in Latin, but not in English, Comprar en línea Atenolol, comprar Atenolol baratos, whose sentences ended so naturally in prepositions. Even Lowth acknowledged that this tendency was “an idiom which our language is strongly inclined to,” showing that the strong inclination bent in his direction, too. Buy Atenolol Without Prescription, We may never know if he forgot himself in that last sentence, or if he was joking at the expense of poor English.

Coach that he was, Atenolol without a prescription, Lowth drooled over Latin’s verbs as if they were playbooks from the championship year. Latin gave verbs a distinct present tense, past tense, Atenolol dosage, and past participle. English had a few verbs that maintained all three distinct tenses, too—like to eat (eat, ate, eaten) and to drink (drink, japan, craiglist, ebay, overseas, paypal, drank, drunk.)  But the language had grown lazy over the past few centuries and had combined some verb forms. To love (love, Comprar en línea Atenolol, comprar Atenolol baratos, loved, loved) is an example of an English verb with only two distinct forms; to run (run, ran, run) is another. Lowth didn’t see these changes as an evolution towards efficiency, he saw them as a “very great corruption.”  Weak verbs were for weak languages, in his view, and he wanted English to stop the atrophy, Buy Atenolol Without Prescription.

The new-and-improved English would not only look beefier, Atenolol without a prescription, it would sound smarter after the makeover. That meant double negatives had to go. This was tough because most folks, My Atenolol experience, even Shakespeare, used double negatives to express a single negative. Lowth called this practice “improper” and his assistant coach and successor, Lindley Murray, insisted that two negatives in a sentence made a positive, where can i order Atenolol without prescription. Buy Atenolol Without Prescription, Simple algebra.Eighteenth-century England, in its zeal for classical ideals of logic and reason, was fertile ground for anyone who wanted to explain something rationally, even if it was something as irrational as English.

By some measures, Lowth’s makeover was successful. His grammar answered the 18th century’s call to stabilize a fluid language and set the standard for future linguists. Order Atenolol online c.o.d, With its new six-pack abs—er, rules—English looked classier, or at least classical. (Think Greek statues.) The language wouldn’t be caught dead with the wrong crowd now; the rules were too awkward and pedantic for the less educated, anyway, buy generic Atenolol.

But some say that Lowth didn’t do English any favors, Buy Atenolol Without Prescription. Even in the gawky stage, English was vibrant and flexible, even brilliant. Online buying Atenolol hcl, Lowth stifled the natural flow of English in the name of logic and authority, widened the gulf between language and usage, and turned the lovable nerd into a status symbol. The end product looked a lot more like Latin, but English had to sell a piece of its soul along the way, Atenolol interactions.

{Elise Hahl has studied English and Writing at Stanford and Johns Hopkins Universities. She lives in Boston with her husband and two sons.}

Sources Buy Atenolol Without Prescription, Atchison, Jean. 1991. Language Change: Progress or Decay. Atenolol dose, Second Edition. New York: Cambridge University Press, 9.

Baugh, Albert C., and Thomas Cable, Atenolol from canada. 1993, Buy Atenolol Without Prescription. A History of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Englewood Cliffs, Atenolol brand name, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 253, 257, 278, Atenolol trusted pharmacy reviews.

Dryden, John, Edward Niles Hooker and Hugh Thomas Swedenberg. Atenolol mg, 1974. Buy Atenolol Without Prescription, The Works of John Dryden, Volume 4. Berkeley: University of California Press, 86.

Graddol, David, Atenolol samples, Dick Leith and Joan Swann. 1996. English: History, Buy Atenolol no prescription, Diversity, and Change. New York: Routledge, 151, 161.

Leith, Dick, Buy Atenolol Without Prescription. 1983, purchase Atenolol online no prescription. A Social History of English. Boston: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 106. Generic Atenolol, Lowth, Robert. Buy Atenolol Without Prescription, 1967. A Short Introduction to English Grammar, 1762. Menston, cheap Atenolol no rx, England: The Scolar Press Limited.

Murray, Lindley. Buy Atenolol without prescription, 1968. English Grammar, 1795, Buy Atenolol Without Prescription. Menston, England: The Scolar Press Limited.

Pope, Alexander, Atenolol long term. 1896. Essay on Criticism. New York: MacMillan, 15.

Stackhouse, Thomas. 1731. Reflections on the Nature and Property of Language in General, on the Advantages, Defects, and Manner of Improving the English Tongue in Particular. London: Dove, 187.

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Soma For Sale

Soma For Sale, Whole books—lots of them—have been written about punctuation, and I believe it would take an entire semester to teach writers all the ins and outs of parentheses, the slips and slides of slashes, hyperbolic reactions of the language mavens to simple hyphens.

In one of my favorite of those books on the subject, Karen Elizabeth Gordon defines punctuation rhetorically: “What is it, after all, but another way of cutting up time, creating or negating relationships, telling words when to take a rest, when to get on with their relentless stories, when to catch their breath?”

Here is a brief primer on this confounding subject, spiced with some of my favorite quotes from Gordon and others. (Gordon herself had so much to say on the subject that she wrote two separate editions of The Well-Tempered Sentence, which I refer to here as Well-Tempered One and Well-Tempered Two.)


End-of-sentence punctuation

The period (.)

The period is used for ending declarative or imperative sentences, Doses Soma work, for indicating decimals, for punctuating bulleted lists, for separating reference entries in bibliographies, for following initials, comprar en línea Soma, comprar Soma baratos, and for truncating words into abbreviations.

Karen Elizabeth Gordon, Well-Tempered Two: “A period can pirouette and still make its point.”

The semicolon (;)

The semicolon is stronger than a comma, About Soma, weaker than a period. It has two major roles—you might even say it has a bit of a split personality or a case of confused identity. First, it links two complete sentences (or “independent clauses”) that may have a common theme or other relation to each other, Soma blogs. Second, it acts as a supercomma in a complicated list whose elements have internal commas. In its more minor role, it can also separate elements in a reference or bulleted list.

The colon (:)

A colon, usually preceded by a complete sentence, introduces a second sentence or phrase—or a list or a quote—that illustrates, restates, elaborates, or makes sense of the first sentence, Soma For Sale. Soma coupon, Colons are also used to express ratios and time, and they are used in certain reference notation.

H.W. Fowler, in A Dictionary of Modern English Usage: the colon “delivers the goods that have been invoiced in the preceding words.”

BEWARE: Various style books (Chicago, where can i buy cheapest Soma online, AP, etc.) advocate slightly different uses of the colon, Soma for sale, so if you are writing for publication copy editors will usually apply the style of the publication.

The comma (,)

The comma collects groups of words into phrases, separates elements of a list, and places badly needed pauses between parts of sentences, Soma interactions. When combined with a coordinate conjunction (and, but, Order Soma from United States pharmacy, yet, for, so, or, Soma description, nor), it can separate two independent clauses that would otherwise require a period or semicolon as punctuation.

Karen Elizabeth Gordon, Kjøpe Soma på nett, köpa Soma online, in Well-Tempered One: “What is a comma but a claw rending the sheet, the asthmatic’s gasp?”

The question mark (?)

Question marks are almost as easy to use as periods. (In fact, most of us use them correctly.) A question mark simply ends a sentence that asks a question rather than making a direct statement, Soma trusted pharmacy reviews. Soma For Sale, It gets tricky when questions are imbedded within larger sentences. Confusion arises about how to combine them with other punctuation marks. (If a quotation is itself a question, Ordering Soma online, put the question mark inside quotes; if the quotation is part of a larger question, put the question mark outside quotes.)

The exclamation point (!)

The name of this mark suggests when it should be used—for an exclamation of surprise or excitement. Keep in mind that too many of these make writing look silly or just amateurish.

Lynne Truss, in Eats, Soma used for, Shoots & Leaves, notes that the exclamation is known in the British newspaper world as a screamer, Buy Soma no prescription, a gasper, a startler, or a dog’s collar.

Karen Elizabeth Gordon, Well-Tempered Two: An exclamation mark leaps onto the page in place of flaming eyes, Soma reviews, thumping first, a defiant thrust of chin.”

The ellipsis (and….)

An ellipsis is properly used when quoted material is deleted from a sentence or from a passage. Fast shipping Soma, It can also be used at the end of a sentence to allow a thought to trail off, or to even suggest a little mystery. This is more appropriate in informal writing, like letters or journal writing, Soma For Sale. Ellipses (note the plural) are cropping up more and more in emails as shorthand for “I could go on, but will spare you.”

Punctuation within sentences (clarifying groups of words)

Parentheses (  ( )  ) & Dashes (—)

Parentheses and dashes allow you to take a break from your sentence, Soma brand name, go off on a brief tangent, or give a quick example without really leaving your line of thought behind. Buy Soma without a prescription, As such they are stronger than commas, but weaker than a semicolon. They can be used to set off a phrase or an independent clause; they also may indicate a break in a train of thought or a segue. (An entire sentence, Soma steet value, like this one, can be set off by parentheses, Soma dosage, in which case you are taking a break within the whole paragraph.)

Oftentimes parentheses, dashes, and commas are equally correct, they just set the thought off to a different degree, low dose Soma. Soma For Sale, Likewise, a semicolon and a dash may be equally correct. But a dash may be more appropriate for occasions when the connection between two clauses is less direct, more fractured.

Copy editors distinguish between en-dashes (used for ranges, Soma no rx, or compound adjectives that contain proper nouns) and em-dashes (also called the punctuation dash, defined above).

Lynne Truss, in Eats, Shoots & Leaves : “As they sit on the page, Soma images, it seems to me that the parentheses half-remove the intruding aside, half-suppress it, Order Soma from mexican pharmacy, while the dashes warmly welcome it in, with open arms.”

The quotation mark (‘/’ or “/”)

Pairs of quotation marks are used to set off—you guessed it!—quoted material. They are also used by some publications in lieu of italics to set off titles of books, plays, buy Soma without prescription, recordings, or other works. Soma no prescription, Single quotes are used only when there is quoted material within other quoted material. Reserve quotation marks for real quotations, resisting the urge to use them for irony or to distance yourself from factual inaccuracy.

Many mechanical errors arise from confusion over which punctuation marks go inside quotation marks and which go outside. (This confusion is made worse by the fact that British English uses different rules.) OK, so what goes in, what goes out?

  • Comma—inside

  • Period—inside

  • Semicolon—outside

  • Colon—outside

  • Question mark and exclamation mark—it depends

Lynne Truss, in Eats, Shoots & Leaves:  “[Quotation marks are] sometimes used by fastidious writers as a kind of linguistic rubber glove, distancing them from vulgar words or clichés they are too refined to use in the normal way.”

The ellipsis ( … or ….)

An ellipsis is used when quoted material is deleted from a sentence or from a passage, Soma For Sale. As explained above, Soma from canada, in more informal writing it can also be used at the end of a sentence to allow a thought to trail off, or suggest a little mystery.

When material is removed from the beginning or the middle of a sentence, Canada, mexico, india, three dots are used; when material is removed from the end of a sentence, the three dots follow a period. In some publications this looks like this: [. …], Soma duration. In other publications the four dots are evenly spaced.

An ellipsis in dialogue, when a speaker either abruptly stops or is interrupted; here, Buy no prescription Soma online, dashes are preferred over (because nothing is actually deleted). Example:

Soma For Sale, Chloe heard her mother’s footsteps and shrank from the cookie jar. “I was just trying—“

“Out of the kitchen and on to your homework,” her mother said.

Lynne Truss, in Eats, buy cheap Soma, Shoots & Leaves: “The ellipsis is the black hole of the punctuation universe, surely, Discount Soma, into which no right-minded person would willingly be sucked.”

Intra-word punctuation

The apostrophe (’)

The apostrophe has two main functions: to mark the omission of one or more letters (as in doesn't for does not), and to indicate possessives of nouns and some pronouns (the teacher’s pet). In certain cases, it is allowed to mark plurals.

NOTE: The Associated Press has a weird rule for what it calls “descriptive phrases”: Do not add an apostrophe to a word ending in s when it is used primarily in a descriptive sense: citizens band radio, Soma online cod, a Cincinnati Reds infielder, a teacher college, Rx free Soma, a Teamsters request, a writers guide.

The AP gives this “memory aide:” the apostrophe usually is not used if for or by rather than of would be appropriate in the longer form: a radio band for citizens, a college for teachers, a request by the Teamsters, Soma pharmacy, a guide for writers. An s is required, Buy generic Soma, however, when a term involves a plural word that does not end in s: a children’s hospital, a people’s republic, the Young Men’s Christian Association.

Then there are what AP calls “descriptive names”: Some governmental, buying Soma online over the counter, corporate and institutional organizations with a descriptive word in their names use an apostrophe; some do not. Follow the user’s practice: Actor’s Equity, Purchase Soma, Diners Club, the Ladies’ Home Journal, the National Governors’ Association.

The hyphen (-)

With compound modifiers and compound nouns, hyphens can eliminate a considerable amount of confusion, cheap Soma. Lynne Truss’s examples from Eats, Shoots & Leaves makes this point well; notice how hyphens can alter the meaning of these noun phrases: the little-used car v, Soma For Sale. the little used-car, the superfluous-hair remover v. the superfluous hair-remover, the pickled-herring merchant v. the picked herring-merchant, the two-hundred-odd members of the Conservative Party in Parliament v. the two hundred odd members.

NOTE: We do not use hypens with –ly adverbs when they appear in compound modifiers. But watch out: some nouns (friendly) end in –ly and if they are part of a compound they need to be hyphenated: the friendly-fire accident.

Lynne Truss, in Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The hyphen “keeps certain other words neatly apart, with an identical intention. Thus the picked-herring merchant can hold his head high, and the coat-tail doesn’t look like an unpronounceable single word.”

John Benbow (once stylebook editor of the Oxford University Press): “If you take hyphens seriously, you will surely go mad.”

Karen Elizabeth Gordon, in Well-Tempered Two: “The promiscuous hyphen is game for liaisons with anyone.”

The last word

Lynne Truss, in Eats, Shoots and Leaves, offers this metaphor to keep your marks straight: “In the family of punctuation, where the [period] is daddy and the comma is mummy, and the semicolon quietly practices the piano with crossed hands, the exclamation mark is the big attention-deficit brother who gets overexcited and breaks things and laughs too loudly.”

—Constance Hale


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Buy Flonase Without Prescription, “One pearl is better than a whole necklace of potatoes,” the French mime Etienne Decroux used to remind his students. His dictum works equally well for students of writing. Each word we choose is—or should be—a pearl.

Whether you’re a floodgates-open writer or a blocked writer, Flonase over the counter, remember: the first draft is for just getting the ideas down. It’s in the revising that we sift through our words, Flonase dosage, letting only the most perfect specimens adorn the thread of syntax. These “seven secrets of sinfully good prose” will help you banish the potatoes and burnish the pearls, Buy Flonase Without Prescription.

Secret #1: Use specific, concrete nouns and adjectives.

Well-chosen nouns and adjectives are critical in setting scenes, establishing character, fast shipping Flonase, and giving readers strong visual images. The best nouns are not just concrete (naming something that can be seen, Flonase treatment, touched, heard, tasted, or felt), taking Flonase, but also highly specific. Search for the most evocative and exact. Cheap Flonase, Why choose “house” when the options include cottage, Victorian, duplex, dacha, Flonase price, shack, bungalow, Flonase dose, and bachelor’s pad. Buy Flonase Without Prescription, (Please, stay away from abstractions like abode, dwelling, domicile, or residence.)

Watch for clusters of abstract nouns. When a school principal wrote to parents urging a “communication facilitation skills development intervention” he should have tried harder to be clear: “We all need to help students write better.” Cross out groups of polysyllabic, abstract nouns and start over with one or two simple, clear words, Flonase recreational.

Strong nouns help you cut adjectives. Novice writers make the mistake of gooing up their descriptions with a lot of lush adjectives. Order Flonase online c.o.d, Resist. Make every adjective count, Buy Flonase Without Prescription. Why use “yellow” given the options: bamboo, butter, jonquil, purchase Flonase, lemon, mimosa, Flonase pharmacy, saffron, and sauterne. The writer Diane Ackerman, in an article on golden lion tamarins, order Flonase from mexican pharmacy, described the yellowish monkey as a “sunset-and-corn-silk-colored creature” with “sweet-potato-colored” legs, a “reddish” beard, Flonase schedule, and a chest and belly “the tawny gold of an autumn cornfield.” Now that’s exact.

Adjectives can do double-duty, painting both physical and psychological detail. In a profile about a North Carolina revenue agent, Flonase gel, ointment, cream, pill, spray, continuous-release, extended-release, Alec Wilkinson wrote that Garland Bunting has “eyes that are clear and close-set and steel blue.” Those three adjectives convey Bunting’s glare and capture his gritty personality.

Secret #2: Pick action-packed verbs.
All verbs are either Static ( Buy Flonase Without Prescription, to be, to seem, to become) or Dynamic (to whistle, to waffle, to wonder). The Static verbs are the ones that pour out naturally when we write or speak—“is” appears endlessly in most first drafts. Online buying Flonase hcl, But Dynamic verbs give writing power and drama. Rephrase sentences with Static verbs filling them with action. And not just any action: To describe someone walking down the street consider gambol, shamble, where can i order Flonase without prescription, lumber, lurch, Low dose Flonase, sway, swagger, and sashay.

Roger Angell packs his description of a baseball catcher with powerhouse verbs:

“He whacks his cap against his leg, producing a puff of dust, and settles it in place, its bill astern, with an oddly feminine gesture and then, reversing the movement, pulls on the mask and firms it with a soldierly downward tug, Buy Flonase Without Prescription. The hand dips between his thighs, Flonase wiki, semaphoring a plan….”

Angell notes all the little movements as well as the grand ones, and in his searches for the right verb drafts nouns if necessary (a semaphore is a hand-held signal flag). Flonase blogs, Secret #3: Avoid adverbs.
If you pick pointed verbs, you’ll be able to forgo adverbs. Many adverbs merely prop up a ho-hum verb. Strike “speaks softly” and insert murmurs, Flonase from canadian pharmacy. Erase “eats quickly” in favor of hoovers Buy Flonase Without Prescription, .

Many adverbs are hauled in just to add emphasis—very, definitely, Cheap Flonase no rx, really, quite. But, oddly enough, Flonase trusted pharmacy reviews, in writing these actually subtract power. In lieu of “very pretty, Flonase for sale, ” write fetching. Forget “extremely good”; favor delicious. Rather than “really nervous,” go with trembling, Buy Flonase Without Prescription.

Secret #4: Pare prepositional pileups.
Prepositions—words like on, of, real brand Flonase online, above, beyond, Buy Flonase without a prescription, near and next to—are little words that act like connective tissue in sentences. If we say “Let’s go to the store on the corner of my street,” we’ve used two prepositional phrases: “on the corner” tells us which store, and “of my street” tells us which corner, Flonase brand name. But isn’t it cleaner just to say “the corner store?”

Prepositional pileups can be distracting. Clear the clutter. Convert prepositional phrases into single words:

now Buy Flonase Without Prescription, , not “at this point in time” or “in this day and age”
for instead of “in the interest of”
neat rather not than “neat in appearance”
to believe is better than “to be of the opinion that”
to consider over “take into consideration.”

Secret #5: Keep track of your subjects, and keep your parts parallel.
After picking the pearls, focus on how to string them onto the filament of the sentence. Buying Flonase online over the counter, Start by tracking your subjects and verbs. After you’ve reviewed the verbs, making sure that they are dynamic and specific, do a subject check, is Flonase addictive. Can you identify the person or thing that is performing the action. By controlling the subjects of individual sentences we control the focus of the entire piece.

The more you eliminate noun clutter, excessive adjectives, adverbs, and prepositional pileups, the closer your sentences will hew to these four basic sentence patterns:

Subject + Dynamic Verb
Subject + Dynamic Verb + Direct Object
Subject + Dynamic Verb + Indirect Object + Direct Object
Subject + Static Verb + Complement

Don’t be afraid to keep your sentences stark, Buy Flonase Without Prescription. Flonase forum, This lead from a newspaper story on California tofu industry, sticks to simple sentences and accomplishes both clarity and comedy: “It’s white. It’s weird. It wiggles on a plate.” The writer keeps tofu as her subject and resists the urge to insert herself (“I’ve always thought tofu…”), Flonase australia, uk, us, usa. Then she follows each subject immediately with a verb (is/is/wiggles). Buy Flonase Without Prescription, Muhammed Ali was a master of the powerful punch, whether physical or verbal. This rap from 1974 shows he can keep sentence parts parallel: “Only last week, Japan, craiglist, ebay, overseas, paypal, I murdered a rock, injured a stone, hospitalized a brick. I’m so mean, Flonase from mexico, I make medicine sick.” Ali keeps his subject steady and repeats the same construction as often as he does his jabs.

Secret #6: Play with voice, Order Flonase no prescription, sound, rhythm.
Ali also plays with musicality, with unexpected rhyme of “brick” and sick.” Begin to experiment with elements like rhyme, alliteration, where to buy Flonase, and onomatopoeia. Alliteration repeats the initial sounds in words: sin and syntax, Buy cheap Flonase, content of their character, Walter Winchell wannabe. Onomatopoeia allows the sound of a word to echo the sound of the thing: dishes crash, teeth gnash, and Saran Wrap crinkles, Buy Flonase Without Prescription.

Play also with rhythm. Choose short, about Flonase, single syllable words to set up a staccato rhythm (Churchill’s bracing “I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, No prescription Flonase online, tears, and sweat”), or more mellifluous words for a more melodious flow (Lincoln’s “Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, Flonase steet value, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.”). Vary the rhythm of sentences: Write a passage in short, Flonase pictures, crisp sentences. Write it again letting phrases elongate. Buy Flonase Without Prescription, Mix long and short, noting how short sentences pack a punch and how longer ones soften your message.

Playing with sound and rhythm is one way to develop your voice as a writer. Play with other elements, too—long sentences and short ones, the first person and the second, glorious words and guttural ones.

Secret #7: Make metaphors.
Metaphor, the comparison of disparate things, adds surprise, freshness, and depth. Don’t just repeat an old cliché (“tension so thick you could cut it with a knife”). Metaphors must be invented by the writer for the particular occasion. Theodore Roosevelt accused William McKinley of having “all the backbone of a chocolate éclair.” Novelist James Salter used “the silence of a folded flag” to describe the quiet of an afternoon in provincial France.

And, of course, Etienne Decroux was making a metaphor when he declared that “One pearl is better than a whole necklace of potatoes.”

—Constance Hale.

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Avodart For Sale, No one would accuse Joan Didion of being a grammar slouch. Yet here's how she once described her knowledge: "Grammar is a piano I play by ear, buy Avodart no prescription, Purchase Avodart online no prescription, since I seem to have been out of school the year the rules were mentioned. All I know about grammar is its infinite power."

Most of us also sense we missed some lessons along the way, get Avodart. Avodart canada, mexico, india, But few of us can claim Joan Didion's ear. It can take years to master the nuances of syntax, Avodart samples, Avodart from canada, but it doesn't take long to learn a few critical basics. "The seven deadly sins" are grammatical errors I see time and time again:

its v, Avodart For Sale. it's, australia, uk, us, usa. Effects of Avodart, Many of us may have learned our grade-school grammar too well. "Apostrophe s" is the sign for possession, Avodart used for, Comprar en línea Avodart, comprar Avodart baratos, right. So when an it owns something, buy Avodart without prescription, Herbal Avodart, we write it's. But it's is a contraction of Avodart For Sale, it is. And contractions trump possessives, buy generic Avodart. Avodart description, So its is the possessive, as in "I love grammar and all its idiosyncrasies."

they v, doses Avodart work. Avodart long term, he or she. He or she is cumbersome when you don't know a person's gender, Avodart images. We used to use the masculine he, Avodart For Sale. Online Avodart without a prescription, Modern feminism made that unpalatable. Many writers try to be politically correct, Avodart duration, Avodart pics, using they, and end up grammatically incorrect, buy Avodart from mexico. Avodart reviews, If gender is unknown, you have three good choices: 1) use he or she; 2) pick he in some instances, canada, mexico, india, Avodart overnight, she in others; 3) make the antecedent plural and use they. (Instead of "a person must speak his or her mind" write "people must speak their minds."

between you and I, Avodart without prescription. Between Avodart For Sale, is a preposition, and prepositions must be followed by objects. Buy cheap Avodart no rx, This means that the pronoun here must be me not I. Between you and me is correct.

who v, kjøpe Avodart på nett, köpa Avodart online. Order Avodart online overnight delivery no prescription, whom. Who is pronoun we use for the subject of a sentence, as in "Who called?" Whom is the pronoun we use for the object of a sentence, after Avodart, Avodart class, as in "You called whom?"

good v. well. How many times have you heard a sentence like "This car runs good", purchase Avodart for sale. Get this straight: Good is an adjective; it modifies a noun, Avodart For Sale. Ordering Avodart online, Well is an adverb; it modifies a verb, adjective, Avodart photos, Online buy Avodart without a prescription, or other adverb. When a chef cooks well, buy Avodart from canada, Avodart maximum dosage, a good steak is the result. When a writer writes well, Avodart interactions, Buy no prescription Avodart online, the prose is good

fewer v. less, what is Avodart. Avodart For Sale, When you see a grocery store sign reading "12 items or fewer," congratulate the manager. Avodart online cod, Fewer is the correct adjective when the noun it modifies is a plural comprising multiple units. Less is the correct adjective when the noun it modifies is something that is a mass, or an idea, rather than a number of units. Nonfat milk has fewer calories than whole milk; we should have less Coke in our diet than milk.

lay v. lie, Avodart For Sale. Learn this to stay a step ahead of most writers and editors. Lay is a transitive verb. It must have an object to complete its meaning: A chicken lays eggs. Lie is an intransitive verb. Avodart For Sale, It needs no object to make sense: The dog lies down. (Down is an adverb.)

All of us commit these sins-it's hard not to when we keep hearing the wrong thing. But let a red flag pop up every time you use one of these terms. Stop and walk through the grammar. Then relax and have fun writing.

—Constance Hale.

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Buy Combivent Without Prescription, Punctuation causes most writers even more anxiety than grammar. But it doesn't need to be daunting; after all, buy Combivent online cod, Combivent street price, punctuation is just a system of printers' marks intended to bring clarity to the written word.

Imagine a paragraph as a musical score with punctuation marks as the rests that tell us when, is Combivent safe, Combivent alternatives, and how long, to pause, Combivent no prescription. Generic Combivent, Think of the comma as an eighth rest, the colon as a quarter rest, where can i cheapest Combivent online, Combivent no rx, the semi-colon a half rest, and the period a whole rest, rx free Combivent. Discount Combivent, Once you've got that down, try to avoid my punctuation pet peeves:

The period (.) All sentences end with a period, Combivent without a prescription, Combivent price, coupon, but sentences need both a subject and a verb. Without them, all you've got is a fragment, Buy Combivent Without Prescription.

Pet peeve #1: Using a period when you don't have a sentence, buying Combivent online over the counter. Buy no prescription Combivent online, Unless you are using a sentence fragment for stylistic reasons, don't put a period after a group of words that is just a phrase, order Combivent online c.o.d. Where can i buy cheapest Combivent online, Example: A bad thing.

The semicolon (;) The semicolon has two major roles, Combivent reviews. Buy Combivent Without Prescription, First, it joins two complete sentences (or "independent clauses") that the writer wants to link. Where can i find Combivent online, Second, it acts as a supercomma in a complicated list whose elements have internal commas, buy Combivent without a prescription. Fast shipping Combivent, Pet peeve #2: Using a comma where a semicolon is required. Example: He intended to propose, comprar en línea Combivent, comprar Combivent baratos, Combivent from canadian pharmacy, she intended to ditch him at the next turn.

Pet peeve #3: Mixing commas and semicolons willy-nilly in a list. Example: Last year I traveled to Waialua, Combivent blogs, Buy Combivent online no prescription, Hawaii, the highest mountain in the world, Combivent images, Combivent without a prescription, and Sierraville, California.The colon (:)-A colon, Combivent no prescription, Combivent brand name, usually preceded by a complete sentence, introduces a second sentence or phrase-or a list or quote-that illustrates, Combivent street price, Combivent treatment, restates, elaborates, online buying Combivent, Buy Combivent online cod, or makes sense of the first sentence.

Pet peeve #4: Using a colon when the verb already does the introducing, making the colon redundant, Buy Combivent Without Prescription. Example: My favorite dances are: hula, Combivent steet value, Combivent overnight, the waltz, and the Cha Cha.

The comma (, online Combivent without a prescription, Is Combivent addictive, ) The comma collects groups of words into phrases, separates elements of a list, Combivent australia, uk, us, usa, Combivent trusted pharmacy reviews, and places badly needed pauses between parts of sentences.

Pet peeve #5: Dropping commas after long introductory phrases. Example: In the case of my great aunt the family just decided she was too wacky to listen to.

Pet peeve #6: Dropping the comma between two clauses joined by coordinate conjunctions. Example: My grandmother remained faithful to her but my father laughed her off.

Pet peeve #7: Using a comma, generic Combivent, Combivent pharmacy, rather than a semicolon, to splice together two independent clauses. Example: We all have "Aunt Flossie stories", the one about lunch at the Waldorf is my favorite.

Pet peeve #8: Dropping the comma after a subordinate clause. Example: While the waiter stood stoically Aunt Flossie showed him how to make a proper chef's salad.

Pet peeve #9: Dropping the second comma in an appositive phrase. Example: Buy Combivent Without Prescription, The waiter, a real professionalnever let his smile wilt.

Pet peeve #10: Dropping the second comma at the end of a "weak interruption." Example: Secretly, of coursehe wasappalled.

Pet peeve #11: Dropping the second comma in a nonrestrictive clause. Example: My brother and I, who found Aunt Flossie entertainingnever forgot her performance.

Exclamation mark (!) An exclamation mark expresses surprise or excitement.

Pet peeve #12: Overly enthusiastic use. I get this. I really get this punctuation thing!

Lynne Truss, in Eats, Shoots and Leaves, offers this metaphor to keep your marks straight: "In the family of punctuation, where the [period] is daddy and the comma is mummy, and the semicolon quietly practices the piano with crossed hands, the exclamation mark is the big attention-deficit brother who gets overexcited and breaks things and laughs too loudly."

—Constance Hale.

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