Will You Assent to the Ascent?

Assent and ascent are two more words with the same sound but different meanings. When you agree with an idea, you assent to it. When you climb a mountain, you ascend it. When you assent to an ascent, that means you’re willing to go mountain climbing. Assenting to something means giving your approval, at least … Read more

Doublets: An Endless Source of Fascination

Because of its long practice of borrowing words from other languages, English has acquired a huge stock of doublets, pairs of words that began as the same word, but over time have changed in form and in meaning. Sometimes the kinship between doublets, such as potion and poison, are fairly obvious. With others, such as … Read more

Chant and Cant

“My dear friend, clear your mind of cant. You may say to a man, “Sir, I am your most humble servant.” You are not his most humble servant. You tell a man, “I am sorry you had such bad weather and were so much wet.” You don’t care sixpence whether he is wet or dry. … Read more

Share Your Writing Tips

It was about time to get our wonderful readers involved with the blog. Instead of writing an article with one hand, therefore, let’s group our knowledge and see what comes out of it. The topic I want to cover is “Tips to Become a Better Writer.” All you need to do is to send one … Read more

Five Tips For Writing Great Web Content

Writing for the web is another great freelance writing market. It’s already huge and it’s growing every day. There’s so much web content out there that you need to make yours stand out. Here are four ways to make your web content appeal to readers. 1. Descriptive Titles The title of your article should tell … Read more

Writing For People Who Write

If you want to convince young people to do something, do you write for young people? Or do you write for people whom young people listen to? Years ago, people thought of communications as a hypodermic needle or a magic bullet. Prepare your message and shoot it into your audience. One problem with that approach … Read more

Skin And Bones

There are a lot of idiomatic expressions in English relating to skin and bones. Here are a few examples. Bone idle – lazy. (Example: He never does anything; he’s just bone idle.) Bone up – study. (Example: I need to bone up on history before the final exam.) By the skin of your teeth – … Read more

“Black Friday”: An Unfortunate Expression

As Thanksgiving approaches every year, we see and hear the commercial expression “Black Friday.” This johnny-come-lately expression still bothers me when I hear it mentioned on the radio or see it spread across the newspaper in big letters. It bothers me because in more traditional usage, dating at least from Roman times, “black” in front … Read more

7 Ways to Kick Start the Writing Habit

Sometime ago I came across an interesting post on Freelance Folder outlining seven ways to get your creative juices flowing. If you have been writing for a while, you know that getting out of the occasional writer’s block is a challenging task. Below you will find the seven tips, I am pretty sure they will … Read more

It’s Not “The Ox-Bow Incidence”

Have you ever heard someone say: I’ve experienced a couple of incidences like that now. The word wanted there is incidents, not incidences. Incidence is one of those words, like disinterested and percentile, that tends to crop up where it doesn’t belong. Both incident and incidence derive from a medieval Latin word with the sense … Read more

English Grammar 101: Nouns

A noun is a word used to describe a person, place, thing, event, idea, and so on. Nouns represent one of the main elements of sentences, along with verbs, adjectives, prepositions and articles. Nouns usually function as subjects or objects within sentences, although they can also act as adjectives and adverbs. Here is a list … Read more

Persecute, Prosecute

Persecute and prosecute are occasionally mixed up. Persecute means to torment or cause suffering, usually because of some perceived difference. School bullies persecute those whom they perceive to be weaker than they are. In the adult world, people may be persecuted because of their religious beliefs, political beliefs, ethnicity, sexual orientation or social grouping. Prosecution, … Read more