Browsing All posts tagged under »spelling«

Seven Bar Jokes Involving Grammar and Punctuation

November 8, 2012 by


1. A comma splice walks into a bar, it has a drink and then leaves. 2. A dangling modifier walks into a bar. After finishing a drink, the bartender asks it to leave. 3. A question mark walks into a bar? 4. Two quotation marks “walk into” a bar. 5. A gerund and an infinitive […]

This is Not a Picture of a Cat (Dead or Alive)*

September 24, 2012 by


I don’t know what it is but I can’t spell when I’m asleep. Or, not can’t spell. I get words mixed up. Mostly homophones like ‘retch’ and ‘wretch’ and ‘through’ and ‘threw’. The sort of distinction that’s obvious, but that my unconscious mind is apparently incapable of making. It also happens if I’m composing and […]

I Know It When I See It?

August 15, 2012 by


I never came across formal grammar in school until I started learning a foreign language. And then it was like ‘these are verbs, these are adjectives, and this is the wacky way they use them in French’. I was never taught English grammar in school. Of course, that doesn’t mean they don’t teach it. My […]

Things You Do Not Realise Until You Start Proofreading Epic Documents

April 26, 2012 by


There are some words where the addition or subtraction of the letter ’s’ makes no difference whatsoever to the meaning, or validity of spelling but makes you look like a right goof if you do it inconsistently. There are way more differences between AUS/UK and US English spelling than you would give credit for. And […]

The Seventh Dwarf: Horseflesh

January 25, 2012 by


Me: I’m trying to decide whether to make one of my characters absent for the first book Arkem: Well if you can do without him, you might as well kill — Me: No, not non-existent just… not there. The rumour on the edge of sight. The seventh dwarf. Horseflesh. I’m not entirely sure why, but […]

Do You Ever Do That Thing Where You’re Looking at a Word or Hearing a Word And All of a Sudden it Ceases to Have Meaning?*

November 14, 2011 by


You’re staring at this bizarre combination of syllables and thinking, What is that even? How is that supposed to convey anything? Why are those sounds or letters in that order? That’s not even language. Which, I suppose, is fair. After all language is only words or letters that convey meaning. In that moment they don’t […]