Monthly Archives: June 2008

Possessive with Two Nouns

The possessive case can be confusing, especially when two nouns are doing the possessing. Fortunately, The Chicago Manual of Style sheds light on this conundrum. Chicago says that when two nouns “possess” the same entity, only the second takes an … Continue reading

Posted in parts of speech | 77 Comments

Number Contest Winner

The winner is Dina Roberts. You can get to know her at her blog, Let Them Eat Corn. Congratulations, Dina! Here is the sentence that needed work: In his office, there was a fax machine, two four-drawer file cabinets, and … Continue reading

Posted in parts of speech, plural, singular, subject, verb | 2 Comments

Number Contest

Here’s the second of the two contests I promised yesterday. This one centers on number. Do you see the problem with the sentence below, and do you have a solution? If so, let me know. I’ll post the winner’s name … Continue reading

Posted in clear thinking, plural, singular, word usage | 1 Comment

Usage Contest

To make up for not running a contest in quite awhile, I’m posting one today and another tomorrow. If you are the first person to correct both sentences, I’ll mention your name and other information you’d like to see here … Continue reading

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Copulative Verbs

What the heck are copulative verbs? Until last night, I didn’t have a clue. But thanks to The Copyeditor’s Handbook, by Amy Einsohn, I now know that copulative verbs are “verbs that express a state of being, rather than an … Continue reading

Posted in parts of speech, Uncategorized, usage | 7 Comments

Ex- Very Punny

Just thought I’d tell you about an exchange I had some years ago with a friend. Judging by the constant commotion, especially when I was trying to sleep, rats were having a grand old time in the attic of the … Continue reading

Posted in pun, Uncategorized, word usage | Leave a comment

Fuzzy Sentence Structure

Last week, I heard this on the radio: She is a former prosecutor and author. Because of the way the words are arranged, the meaning is fuzzy. Does the adjective “former” modify both “prosecutor” and “author”? Or does it modify … Continue reading

Posted in clear thinking, sentence structure, word usage | Leave a comment