Saturday, January 10, 2015

Short writing, to the point, grammatically correct

It is an art to write short and to the point. Many writers believe a lot of explanation of what is being said is required. In other words, as something is written, the writer digresses or goes off the point or deviates or wonders or rambles with more words than required to explain what is being written.

The “Thank You” note is very much an art and is a lot simpler than writers of “Thank You” notes usually produce. The most common issues with standard “Thank You” notes is when the writer starts with “I just wanted to write to you to say thank you for…” The writer is writing so why tell the reader “I just wanted to write…”? Then there is the “to you” which is obvious because the “Thank You” note is being read by the person for which it was intended in the first place as well as the second, third and fourth places. And, why “to say” thank you when it’s “thank you” that’s being said. The best way to start a “Thank you” note is with two simple and obvious words: Thank you. From there the writer of the note should say for what the “thank you” is.

Recently somewhere someplace was an article about today’s English language usage and how it has digressed from correct English form. The writer of that critique said understanding the intent of the writer or person speaking is far more important that the writer or speaker using correct English form. Example: “I am smarter than him.” That’s incorrect. It should be “I am smarter than he.” Would you say, “I am smarter than him is smart” or would you say “I am smarter than he is smart.”? That’s a good rule of thumb to determine if word usage is correct.

Athletes are notorious for butchering the English language. Turn on nearly any edition of SportsCenter on ESPN and you’ll get the idea that athletics in the limelight for the most part do not think about correct grammar, a lost art on today’s youth, especially athletes. On the other hand, who cares if they can speak correctly as long as those on your favorite team perform well enough to help your team to victory? Enunciation so listeners have any understanding of what is being said is a different story.

Incorrect grammar usage is not just reserved for athletes. The other day at a funeral, a Baptist preacher told his church full of mourners that he had been laying around all day. One wonders what or who he had been laying.
-------------------- word of the day
dowie (adjective) [dou-ee, doh-ee]: dull; melancholy; dismal

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