Grammar Guide

FWJ Grammar Guide for Professional Writers

Common Crutch Words. What’s Yours?

Common Crutch Words. What's Yours?

This morning, I just read – again – an old article published by The Atlantic Wire. Titled “A Literal Epidemic of Crutch Words“, the article highlights words and phrases that we tend to use loosely, both in formal and informal conversation. Going through the list, I couldn’t help but think that writers are not exempt from leaning on crutch words and phrases. Here are some of the phrases/words that I see often – and might have a beef with. Exponentially. “How could you leave out exponentially, a crutch word that might be used accurately once in a thousand times? Something grows exponentially when [Read more…]

The Day I Learned What Friend Zone Means

The Day I Learned What Friend Zone Means

In spite of working online, I do have a tendency to be the last to know about the latest things to go viral. Remember Gangnam Style? I think my mom know about it before I did! Then there’s Harlem Shake, which I totally don’t get. “Friend zone” probably takes the cake, though, as I only really learned the “official” definition today, thanks to the February 2013 update of the Oxford Dictionaries. Last year, I was pleasantly surprised with the addition of “Whovian”, Dr. Who fan that I am. Some of you expressed your distaste at certain additions (see the comments [Read more…]

Why I Don’t Rely Too Much on Spell-Check


I remember how, back when I was younger, I was in awe of spell-check. I didn’t have my own computer till I was in university, but I did have the chance to use WordStar for some school work earlier on. Back then, I saw it as God’s greatest gift to mankind. (Well, right after the Nintendo GameBoy.) Today, we probably take spell-checkers for granted, knowing that they have our backs. After all, whether you use Word, Pages, or the WordPress visual editor, you can easily dabble with the settings so that red (or some other color) lines will show up in [Read more…]

The Worst Words of 2012 – What to Avoid in 2013

The Worst Words of 2012 - What to Avoid in 2013

I was planning to work on this entry earlier this month, but as you know, the Universe and I weren’t exactly on the same page. Still, all’s well that ends well, and I hope I am not incorrect in thinking that it’s not too late to take a look at some of the worst words of 2012. Not only can it be fun, it might also come in handy as we continue churning out our pieces this year. Usually, at the end/beginning of each year, I like taking a look at Lake Superior State University’s list of banished words. What [Read more…]

Mistakes That I Sometimes Make…Do You Make Them, Too?

Mistakes That I Sometimes Make...Do You Make Them, Too?

To be human is to make mistakes. That’s an undeniable thing, but that does not mean we can always use use the excuse. However, if we are aware of our mistakes, we always have the chance to correct them. For this week’s grammar guide post, I’m going to share some mistakes I sometimes make. Often, I catch those mistakes – thanks to proofreading. Sometimes, carelessness gets in the way, and I just have to take criticism on the chin. Tell me if you make these mistakes, too! Who and Whom It is embarrassing, but I when my fingers are flying [Read more…]

When Breaches of Grammar Are Acceptable

Breaking Rules

This post is for the rebels. Or those who have even the slightest streak of rebellion in them. Grammar rules were created for a purpose, and you know that I am the first to stick to them, especially if the context requires it. However, I am also the first to deviate from prescribed grammar rules when the situation allows. If you are a stickler for correct grammar no matter what, I am warning you now: You might not like what you are about to read. On the other hand, if you allow yourself – and others – some flexibility depending on the [Read more…]

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