Coming up in May I am taking a class as part of getting the “Creative Writing” Certificate, the class I am taking is Grammar for Writers, something that I really need and want to improve upon. I’ve started to get really into the idea of having good grammar.
Grammar isn’t something that my mom went into a lot of when we did classes, and it wasn’t something I was really interested in at the time. I’m happy for that, because I don’t think I would be enjoying it as much as I am.
My mom has some neat writing/writers books.
When I asked her about a particular book that I couldn’t remember the title of, and all I could remember is that it was a hard cover with a greenish colour to it she suggested looking at “The Elements of Style” by William Strunk Jr. and E.B. White.
I really like it! So far I have only skimmed through it here and there, but if you’re looking to improve your grammar, I suggest the book, I think it is available for tablet readers also.
My favorite section is the “Misused Words and Expression,” where the authors talk about words or sayings that are frequently used in the wrong way. Here are snippets taken directly from the section.
Aggravate. Irritate. The first means “to add to” an already troublesome or vexing matter or condition. The second means “to vex” or “to annoy” or “to chafe.”
Hopefully.This once-useful adverb meaning “with hope” has been distorted and is now widely used to mean “I hope” or “it is to be hoped.” Such use is not merely wrong, it is silly. To say, “Hopefully I leave on the noon plane is to talk nonsense. Do you mean you’ll leave on the noon plane in a hopeful frame of mind? Or do you mean you hope to leave on the noon plane? Whichever you mean, you haven’t said it clearly. Although the word in its new, free-floating capacity may be pleasurable and useful to many, it offends the ears of many others, who do not like to see words dulled or eroded, particularly when the erosion leads to ambiguity, softness, or nonsense.
Farther. Further. The two words are commonly interchanged, but there is a distinction worth observing: farther serves best as a distant word, further as a time or quantity word. You chase a ball farther than the other fellow; you pursue a subject further.