Per!

rogersgeorge on October 2nd, 2017

I mentioned this solecism (at least) once before, but I found a comic for it, so here’s a repeat.

The rule is that “per” means “according to,” and that’s all you need to say. Don’t use “as per”!!! Ever. Unless you’re telling someone not to use it.

Paul Trap does a good job of making Dad try to be formal, but managing only to be pretentious. Considering that’s he’s talking to an infant, the pretentiousness is even more out of place.

Remember, you want to write so your reader thinks about the subject, not about the writing.

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Like or Such As?

rogersgeorge on September 30th, 2017

The difference between “like” and “such as” is subtle, and they are often used interchangeably in informal English. But if you are writing technical material, such as a résumé or a set of complicated instructions, it pays to use the correct expression. “Like” means “similar to, but not exact.” “Such as” means “here’s an actual […]

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Bad Apostrophe, Good Apostrophe

rogersgeorge on September 28th, 2017

I was going to post this Mallard Fillmore comic just because the comic’s funny and about grammar, but it reminded me of a rule: Don’t use apostrophes for plurals. But English has two exceptions that you might get away with: plurals of numerals and plurals of abbreviations. You don’t need to write plurals of numerals […]

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Counting or Measuring?

rogersgeorge on September 26th, 2017

We use “few” for counting, which is a number, and “less” for measuring, which refers to amounts. But you have room for ambiguity sometimes—referring to time, for instance, and distances. Depending on what you’re saying, either way can work. Here, is Mr. Tinkerson counting the number of sheets or measuring the amount of paper? Either […]

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An Opinion Piece

rogersgeorge on September 24th, 2017

Two of my rules about good writing are to be clear and correct, the latter partly meaning to follow the rules of grammar and spelling. We call these rules the mechanics. I even proofread my emails and seldom abbreviate even my grocery lists (ahem, whenever I write one). I even have a sixth rule, to write […]

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