Beyond the Rhetoric


Posts Tagged ‘word choice’

Grammar 101: On Collective Nouns

March 17th, 2015

In your writing, it is important to be mindful of subject-verb agreement. A singular noun corresponds to one form of a verb, while a plural noun correponds with a different form of a verb. He chooses, but they choose. Joan runs, but the cats run. This can be complicated with the introduction of collective nouns. […]

Grammar 101: “I Am Bias” (Biased)

March 3rd, 2015

A recurring theme here with the Grammar 101 series on Beyond the Rhetoric is that many of the errors people make with grammar are caused by the combination of two factors. First, there are many phrases and idioms that are spoken more often than they are written. Second, the ubiquity of spell check and autocorrect […]

Grammar 101: Using “Per Se”

February 20th, 2015

Having a spell checker integrated into your operating system, word processor or web browser seems like such a great idea. You can easily pick up on your errors and typos as you go along, ensuring that you have the right spelling for everything you write… except when you come across a term like “per se” […]

Grammar 101: Aw, Aww and Awe

February 10th, 2015

You don’t have to look much further than your typical Facebook, Twitter or Instagram feed before you see a picture of a cat or a dog doing something adorable. Or maybe there are some cute animals at the zoo that elicit followers to go, “Awe, that’s so cute.” Or is it “Aww, that’s so cute” […]

Grammar 101: Adept and Inept

February 3rd, 2015

Being an effective communicator means choosing just the right word with just the right meaning under just the right circumstances. As a professional freelance writer, I am particularly cognizant of the words that I choose; some have said you should avoid the word “very” and employ more descriptive, visually-oriented terms instead. The film wasn’t very […]

Grammar 101: Phase or Faze Me

January 27th, 2015

Once again, we encounter a couple of words that sound exactly the same when they are said but have entirely different spellings and meanings when they are written out. As with so many of these word pairs, the confusion between phase and faze is further exacerbated by the fact that the latter is uttered far […]

Grammar 101: At a Loss for Words

January 19th, 2015

There are multiple levels to the English language. You start with the literal meaning, discern the implied meaning and unearth the symbolic meaning. With so many English idioms and sayings, non-native speakers can sometimes struggle with understanding what someone is actually trying to say. One such example is the phrase “at a loss for words.”

Grammar 101: Inquiry and Enquiry

January 5th, 2015

Is there a difference between inquiry and enquiry or can the two words be used interchangeably? Well, as with so many other spelling and grammar issues, the answer can be a little complex. A big part of this has to do with the difference between American and Canadian (British) spelling, as what may be true […]