Editor’s Corner

More wisdom from Carol Fisher Saller, whose keynote speech at the EAC Conference in June made me realize that grammar isn’t something fixed and rigid, that you study once and are done forever.

CMOS Shop Talk

Do you follow grammar “rules” that you don’t understand?

Carol Fisher Saller

Picture writing a rough draftThose of you who use social media are used to seeing comments from sticklers who object to any deviation from the grammar rules they learned. The following sentences would not likely pass their inspection. Can you tell why?

Sentence 1. At the donut shop she had trouble getting her order out.
Sentence 2. Hopefully, none of the donuts are gone.
Sentence 3. But etiquette forced me to share the donuts.

People who are fuzzy on the rules might fail sentence 1 for ending with a preposition, sentence 2 for beginning with hopefully and treating none as a plural instead of a singular subject, and sentence 3 for beginning with but and containing a passive.

The problem is, however, that they would be wrong on every count.

Sentence 1. Although out often serves as a preposition {He hurried out…

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2 thoughts on “Editor’s Corner

    1. So true. And it accomplishes nothing other than giving them the momentary satisfaction of being “right”. Public correction of grammar, spelling, or usage changes nothing, and just puts other people’s backs up.

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