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3
votes
3answers
256 views

A tricky sentence to construct

I'm writing a blog post, and with one of the sentences I want to say that I'm not judging anyone differently to how I judge myself. So I thought I'd go with the "hold someone to account" metaphor. ...
3
votes
5answers
899 views

How do you use “stardust” in a sentence? Is there a better word to describe what I am trying to convey?

I am looking for an expression or a word that will describe my attitude towards a country I've never visited. In this sentence, I want to show to the reader that I've created an idolized and ...
1
vote
4answers
2k views

Using “the reader” or “the readers”

When discussing books in a formal essay, is it more appropriate to use "the reader" or "the readers"? For example: Like a true anthropologist, Bill Bryson takes [readers / the reader] on a highly ...
2
votes
1answer
6k views

When is it correct to capitalize terms/phrases in a personal statement?

I'm writing a personal statement for graduate admissions, and I've a query regarding the use of capitalization in the midst of sentences. For example, is it correct/expected to capitalize the names of ...
6
votes
3answers
899 views

Is concurrent first person / third person usage absolutely unacceptable?

Background: My understanding about first person / third person is this: choose a voice and maintain it throughout the piece. However, when writing marketing-type information, I find myself switching ...
1
vote
3answers
637 views

How to fix awkward “sufficiently… that…” sentence structure?

I have written the following sentence, but I am dissatisfied with its construction. In particular, the that joining the two parts of the sentence reads somewhat awkwardly. Can anyone suggest a better ...
6
votes
2answers
220 views

Finding words through meanings

Is there a place or a type of dictionary or even a good method, that instead of searching for a word, I can search for a meaning and get more words that have similar idea or meaning? For example, if ...
2
votes
3answers
80 views

What is best way to accentuate the positive in an endorsement?

I want to write an endorsement for someone. I have one line that begins like this: "I have no doubt that ..." But I don't like the negative connotation of 'no doubt'. My best alternative of ...
1
vote
2answers
193 views

Is there anything wrong with saying “Thanks” several times in the same email? If not, how could I correct it?

E.g. here is an email I just sent: Hello X, Okay I see - thanks very much for all the code! I'll definitely have to take some time to study it before I can ask any questions. :) Also - ...
12
votes
7answers
4k views

Why does using this “-ing” verb construction make my writing weaker?

I had to write a scholarship essay, wherein I wrote this sentence: Over the ensuing years I read as much as I could, trying to increase my knowledge and understanding of my own language. I sent ...
2
votes
3answers
2k views

A more specific type of “nervous laughter”

A handful of my friends have an odd trait where they say something and immediately laugh after it in an attempt to judge its success. The topic is usually a rant along the lines of, "These people have ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Common words to avoid when writing formally

I am rather useless at writing formal English and sometimes find that I can come across informal with my choice of words. So I wondered what common words and phrases should be avoided when writing an ...