Questions relating to proper style or a specific instance of style in English.

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0
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0answers
30 views

How do you slip info into a story without making it sound like a history lesson or monologue? [on hold]

I want to make my writing sound more personal, yet uncompromising with regards to information. How do I achieve that with my characters? What I do is let the character mention it in the most ...
0
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1answer
33 views

What does the poem “My Cup” by Robert Friend mean? [on hold]

"My Cup" by Robert Friend They tell me I am going to die. Why don't I seem to care? My cup is full. Let it spill.
-1
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1answer
33 views

A way to describe/categorize music that would rhyme/alliterate with each day of the week [closed]

Good day, apologies for the rather confusing title. My friends and I came up with an idea and started a music appreciation day for each day of the week. The idea is that each day has an assigned genre ...
0
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1answer
23 views

Punctuation between clauses when the first clause is a series

I have this sentence: Even if I seem too busy, or you made a mistake, or someone we care about will be upset, or you feel embarrassed, if anything bothers you, I want to know. I believe that ...
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1answer
30 views

When to repeat a paragraph?

I was reading through this article recently, and I noticed that the first and seventh paragraphs are identical. Stylistically speaking, is it common to repeat entire strings of text as shown here? ...
0
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1answer
73 views

Can we use both British English and American English in the same article?

Can we use British English trends and American English trends (such as spelling, or turns of phrase) in different sentences in the one topic?
1
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3answers
65 views

Quite a lot / quite a few / quite a bit

Recently I’ve got stumbled upon the question: What’s the difference between quite a lot, quite a few, and quite a bit? This is very confusing considering a lot and a few have almost opposite ...
2
votes
7answers
3k views

… is done in agreement with xxx?

Background: I'm writing a professional (technical) report in which I want to express the following in one simple sentence: The whole report is written based on a certain assumption, except one part ...
0
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4answers
77 views

Should I use interchangable terms in academic writing?

In academic writing (when writing to a journal), should I stick to the same terms throughout a paper, e.g. Twenty participants participated to the study. The participants received monetary ...
3
votes
3answers
141 views

“there was” versus “was”

In a Lynda.com tutorial I came across such a sentence: "In camera uploads (folder) are all the photos that I had in my iPad". Instead, I would have probably said: "In camera uploads there are ...." Is ...
0
votes
2answers
70 views

Italicizing foreign language words in an English Essay

I am writing an essay about German history, and I'm unsure whether German words should be italicized or not. The essay is in English, but I use words like Reichstag (German Parliament Building), ...
1
vote
1answer
142 views

What is wrong with the phrase “me and my work”?

For my thesis, in my acknowledgements, I have the following line: I would like to thank my fiancé, ----, who has endlessly supported me and my work. My supervisor highlighted me and my work and ...
1
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2answers
45 views

How to use a person's given name, followed by what they're also known as, in the same sentence

How do we use a person's given name, followed by what they're also known as, in the same sentence? For example, There's just no denying that Barry Allan a.k.a. The Flash is one extremely fast ...
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0answers
22 views

In the late nineteenth- and early twentieth-centuries; suspended hyphen [duplicate]

How would you suggest to list centuries here: Suspended hyphen: In the late nineteenth- and early twentieth-centuries... Separated by commas: In the late nineteenth-, and early twentieth-, ...
1
vote
1answer
153 views

Oxford Comma Conventions

According to the Wikipedia page for the Oxford Comma, "Use of the comma is consistent with conventional practice" and "Use of the comma is inconsistent with conventional practice." Did the Oxford ...
0
votes
1answer
58 views

Hyphenation of the suffix “like”

I am having trouble understanding the following: "the achievable rate of the optimal AF scheme performs close to the cut-set like bound obtained in this paper" I think that the word "like" (above) ...
0
votes
2answers
77 views

What is the best literary technique to introduce a new word, conceived by yourself, in your story? [closed]

I am an aspiring novelist, and there's this "science fiction & fantasy" story I am working on, wherein I have coined some new words here and there. I am sending this question to the proficient ...
0
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2answers
66 views

What's the conventional style for writing a conversation taking place in another language?

I'm writing a story and I'm having a bit of trouble with styling conversations that take place in another language. I want the reader to be privy to this conversation, so it has to be communicated in ...
-1
votes
1answer
76 views

En dash with compound adjectives (problem)

I frequently encounter cases, such as the ones below, where you seemingly have two hyphenated compound adjectives modifying a noun. I know that in such cases that you should join the compound ...
2
votes
6answers
79 views

Is it correct to say semi-promise?

I want to say, someone sort of promised to do something, yet it was not a full promise: She had a semi-promise from his employer to get a raise this year. Is semi-promise correct in this sense? ...
1
vote
0answers
47 views

Middle English Date citations in Oxford English Dictionary [closed]

I have seen some citations in the OED that use dates such as 'c. 1295', which I assume to mean 'circa 1295'. However, I have also seen dates that appear as 'a. 1393' - what does this 'a' stand for? ...
0
votes
2answers
52 views

How should we put a website address into a sentence? [closed]

Is the following a right way to put a website address in a sentence? You can visit the website http://english.stackexchange.com/questions/ask for English grammar problems.
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2answers
58 views

How to capitalize “get out of” in a title according to CMOS?

I need to know how to correctly capitalize this title. I usually go with the Chicago Manual of Style for rules, but wasn't able to find anything regarding something like this: This Is How He ...
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1answer
28 views

Is there a 35th edition of “On Writing Well”?

My English teacher recommended Zinsser's "On Writing Well" as a supplement to my reading of E.B. White's "The Elements of Style". While I know that Zinsser's 30th edition exists, I have come across an ...
-1
votes
1answer
46 views

Stative and Dynamic Verbs

Please explain how a stative verb and a dynamic verb can have the same subject without breaking parallel construction. How correct and reasonable is this: I travel around the world and enjoy ...
1
vote
1answer
83 views

“I feel it my duty” vs. “I feel it *IS* my duty” [duplicate]

Given these two choices: I feel it     my duty to [do something]. I feel it is my duty to [do something]. Which is preferred, and why? Background: I got confused when reading an article in The ...
0
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1answer
34 views

Interpretation, which is desired to open two story lines [closed]

Is there a word, which describes a point in a story, that opens two different story lines, which are both conclusive and intended. If there isn't any word, how would you write this issue?
0
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1answer
88 views

Question building in English vs. in French [duplicate]

Question about language grammar etymology. In French the question «Do you love?» can be written as «Aimez-vous?» in German — «Mögen Sie?», but in English — «Do you love?». Why should we use the verb ...
0
votes
2answers
96 views

Is the sentence “The table is included for completeness” correct?

I've used the sentence “The table is included for completeness” several times in university reports and have seen it in reports of other students as well. I am wondering if this sentence is correct ...
0
votes
2answers
48 views

“the below-identified person”: Term for this style and any style guides regarding

Are there any technical terms to specifically describe the two styles (A and B) below? Also, are there any prescriptive style guides that say which is preferable? My own preference is for style B ...
0
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1answer
37 views

What is better style: “is linked” or “it is linked”? [closed]

Does "it" improve English sentence's style please? Which of the below is "more English"? The table exists and it is linked to a correct server. The table exists and is linked to a correct server. ...
0
votes
1answer
47 views

Ordinal numbers usage

When you are delineating a set of statements which come one after another, could you use ordinal numbers but omit some of them in between ? For example, consider I want to describe the limitations in ...
1
vote
2answers
31 views

Is “final intention” a pleonasm?

I'm proofreading a report and stumbled on this in the following form: His final intention is to create a large flying city. Is “final intention” a pleonasm in this sentence (or always)?
1
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1answer
38 views

Where to position adverbs

They may sound both correct but which one is more acceptable in standard written English? She is writing a letter now. or She is now writing a letter. Thanks
12
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7answers
2k views

My English translator capitalizes every noun. Is it correct? [closed]

I'm developing an Android/iPhone application. My translator for English localization uses a lot of capitalization. For example, in the app menu, it suggests: |Export Data to Folder| |Prevent Screen ...
3
votes
1answer
103 views

Can I use two colons in a sentence?

Can I use two colons in a sentence? A typical example would be something like the following: Note: I have substantial experience with the following languages: Python, Java, C++, and Perl. I have ...
1
vote
3answers
93 views

When is writing eloquently considered “wordy”? [closed]

When I write, I prefer to do so as eloquently as possible: why should writing be only functional? Although, my English teacher considers this poor style--her belief reflected in some of my essay ...
1
vote
1answer
40 views

count of the number of times

I found this expression in a book. "This is a count of the number of times SomeDB had to follow an index pointer to the actual document on disk." It sounds weird to me but I am a non-native speaker. ...
1
vote
1answer
81 views

Is using “maybe” in combination with a conjugation of “to be” bad style?

I've read this answer about the difference between “maybe” and “may be”. It contains the sentence “maybe he is in the office today” as a correct example. In the above example “maybe” and “is” is ...
4
votes
3answers
340 views

Comparative or superlative to describe a quality of a member of a set of two things?

For example, 'he's the bigger of the two guards' or 'he's the biggest of the two guards'? The comparative indicates that something is bigger/more difficult than another member. If there's only two ...
0
votes
1answer
40 views

An (consonant) object [duplicate]

My original sentence was: ... an array of ... However I decided I wanted to elaborate on this, as "(traditionally two-dimensional) array". We usually use parentheses for extra detail not ...
2
votes
3answers
1k views

Is it considered good style to use “relatedly” to start a sentence?

I sometimes like to start sentences with “Relatedly,”, as you might start them with “besides”, “however”, “furthermore,” and so on. (“Like” in that I find the word practical and concise. It could be ...
1
vote
3answers
77 views

Best way to phrase “{x and y} and z”?

I've continually struggled with this sentence arrangement. I have a list of 2 groups, but one of the groups is also a group of 2. Example: "I need help finding turtles and brown and grey foxes" The ...
0
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1answer
82 views

What does the reviewer mean?

I submitted my paper in a journal and after five months the reviewer replied as follows. I cannot understand him. Would you please let me what is really he means (bold words below). Words are omitted ...
0
votes
1answer
67 views

Beautiful novels [closed]

Putting aside the wonderful realm of Middle-Earth and many other values, The Lord of the Rings and Tolkien's other works are written in a very beautiful English. What are other novels/stories that you ...
0
votes
1answer
108 views

“To a fare-thee-well” for “perfectly well” in AE

Does the idiom "to a fare-thee-well" have any currency in modern day AE speech and writing, or does it have sort of an old fashioned feel to it? http://www.thefreedictionary.com/fare-thee-well ...
2
votes
1answer
186 views

Swapping Words in 'Deep' Sayings

Here's an example of a common swapping that happens when people want to sound profound: The clothes don't make the man It's the man that makes the clothes What is this form of swapping called?
0
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1answer
38 views

Terminal preposition / adposition question

So I was hoping to know if the phrase as many as I can think of is improper or incorrect because it ends with the word "of"? What would be a way to minimally change this to not violate any ...
0
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2answers
92 views

Style Guide: Bold, Italic, or Quotes When I Want to Emphasize Something

Let’s say I have many lists of this kind on a page: Click on the Foo button. Tick the Bar box. Click on the Save button. How should I emphasize Foo, Bar, and Save? Bold? Click on the Foo ...
2
votes
3answers
176 views

What are reasons to omit quotation marks in dialogue?

While writing a short memoir for a college course, I wrote the dialogue without quotation marks, the biggest reason being that I do not like how clunky it looks in Times New Roman. I do not mind it ...