I realize spontaneous comments can end up sounding less than perfect, but I’ve been tracking candidates and commentators, and in my usual ruthless editor style, I feel another redundancy rant coming on.
1) Kiss Former Member Hit By Drunken Gunfire
You want me to kiss whom? Continue
Concise writing is comprehensive but to the point, using the fewest words to achieve understanding. It is free of repetition and needless detail.
That’s why the reason why seems redundant to me. (Reminder: As it relates to words, redundant means something that can be omitted without loss of meaning or function.)
But not everyone thinks so. Consider these story headings I found online: ContinueLike it? Share it!
Authors sometimes take license with grammar to create a mood, a scene or a character. I usually don’t object to storytelling that deviates from standard usage, as long as it serves a purpose. Songwriters do it all the time!
When I was invited to join a book club a few months ago, I welcomed the opportunity to expand my horizons by reading things I might not otherwise have chosen to explore. I just finished The Dog Stars, a tale about a handful of individuals who have survived a flu pandemic that appears to have wiped out much of civilization. One review described it as “a post-apocalyptic adventure.”
Peter Heller, an experienced writer who has a Master of Fine Arts degree from the Iowa Writers Workshop in fiction and poetry, uses a writing style that suits the tale he tells. It mimics the sometimes random thoughts that float through all of our heads, ramblings that don’t require grammatically complete sentences or punctuation. Here’s an example: ContinueLike it? Share it!
Different has been on this ruthless editor’s grammar radar for some time. Its use might be simply a bad habit, but I’ve heard it enough lately to prompt me to write a post about how redundant it can be.
What is a redundant word? It’s one that doesn’t add meaning to what is being said or written. Here are select redundancies from a previous post:
And here’s why using different is a bad habit I wish people could break. ContinueLike it? Share it!
Happy Grammar Day! It’s time to acknowledge the importance of picking just the right words and just the right punctuation to clearly communicate your message. If you think “proper” grammar, with all of its rules and guidelines, is a thing of the past, please check out my Ruthless Editor Grammar Day column: What Is Grammar, and Why Does It Matter?
Here are some headlines with their own grammar lessons:
Potpourri (pronounced poe-pur-REE) is a mixture, most commonly of dried flower petals and spices, valued for its fragrance. However, it also can be a musical medley, a collection of miscellaneous literary extracts — or any mixture, especially of unrelated objects, subjects, etc.
This post is a mixture of words, although perhaps not quite “literary extracts.” It is a collection of things I have heard or read since my last post, and it exemplifies why I consider myself a ruthless editor, why I blog, and why I write a monthly column about grammar. ContinueLike it? Share it!
I’ve stated more than once that if a writer is going to make a mistake, a headline is the worst place for that to happen. We skim headlines to decide which stories to further explore, so errors there are seen by more readers than errors within a story.
Here’s a batch of recent headlines that, if I were editing them, would not have appeared in their present form: ContinueLike it? Share it!
Wow, have I found an interesting blog! Because I have a book in the works, I’ve been reviewing information about marketing and self-promotion. Someone who professes to know something about how to market books provides advice via his blog that is so convoluted and poorly written, it destroys the author’s credibility — and thus the information he provides. Here are some copied-and-pasted excerpts, followed by my comments. ContinueLike it? Share it!