Friday, September 5, 2008

Some thoughts on grammar, style and punctuation

A few thoughts on mastering grammar, posted today for my writing class.

If you produce writing with grammar, style and punctuation errors – resumes, cover letters, reports, press releases, papers -- you come off as ill-educated and unprofessional. Spellcheck won’t catch everything.

( I say this knowing my emails are full of typos. Proofreading is key and I have a bad eye for it.)

When I was first relearning this stuff, I found it tedious and confusing. So, I looked for a couple of different books for grammar wisdom. Considering different explanations of the same concept – like when to use I v. me – helped me get my head around it. (That might be a cliché.)

Here are a few grammar books I like:

Old school
The Elements of Style, by Strunk and White.

A charming, if dated, book.

New School
Woe is I : The grammarphobe's guide to better English in plain English / Patricia T. O'Conner,

Fun with grammar.

When Words Collide : A media writer's guide to grammar and style / Lauren Kessler, Duncan McDonald.

Lots of people like this one. I have not used it.

PBS ?

Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing
(Paperback)
by Mignon Fogarty

Saw this animated show on TV this summer but have not checked this book out.

No comments: