puzzle-1487340_1280

Dashes are not a one-size-fits-all answer each time you need to pause. People frequently use dashes interchangeably with the comma: Anytime they want to pause, they just toss in dashes without realizing that the nature of the information dictates whether a dash is appropriate. The comma represents a routine pause; the dash does not. You can occasionally… Read more »

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computer-1185637_1280

With all the nuances of the English language, writers often are stare at a sentence and ask, is that right? Here are a few issues people commonly ask about.   Starting a sentence with and – Because many teachers said it was wrong, there remains a persistent belief that it is taboo. But writers have done it… Read more »

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Opening most messages with a summary of the key points provides a valuable framework for the reader. When you open a proposal, whether it’s three pages or 30, the first thing you see is an executive summary, which orients the reader to what the proposal contains. It’s a standard part of proposals, and the same… Read more »

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Clear writing Ken O'Quinn

Blending and restructuring sentences can create fluid and more concise writing that keeps readers moving.   The simplified, declarative sentence is powerful. “You should send me the details soon,” and “Cari met with me yesterday to discuss the plan” convey their meanings clearly and concisely, using the subject-verb order. That is the core structure of… Read more »

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writer's block ken oquinn

To break out of writer’s block, relax your mind and put something on the screen, even if it’s just a few words. When you look at the swarm of email that fills your inbox every day, you wouldn’t think that anyone had trouble with writer’s block, but they do. When they need to write a substantive… Read more »

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