Assorted Grammatical Problems Exercise (616)

In each sentence, identify and correct the grammatical error.

Answers and Explanations

1.
Original: We are aware that an innovation is being introduced but not really interested or concerned with it.
Correct : We are aware that an innovation is being introduced but not really interested in or concerned with it.

"With" works with "concerned" but not with "interested," which requires its own (appropriate) preposition.

2.
Original: An acquaintance said Smith had complained that "blacks were taking over the world."
Correct : An acquaintance said Smith had complained that "blacks are taking over the world."

Smith’s exact words likely included a verb in the present tense, so either correct the quotation as shown or paraphrase the tense: "An acquaintance said Smith had complained that black people are "taking over the world." (Note that "were" would be incorrect in this case as well, because the person’s complaint was not that black people were taking over the world in the past, but that they are doing so now.)

3.
Original: Growing up gay and black in a small town in the eastern part of the state, his memories of middle school are of being a frequent target for teasing and slurs.
Correct : Growing up gay and black in a small town in the eastern part of the state, he remembers being a frequent target for teasing and slurs during middle school.

The introductory phrase about growing up is associated with the person, not his memories, so the subject should "he."

4.
Original: He’ll be speaking at the conference if you want to hear more from him.
Correct : He’ll be speaking at the conference, so if you want to hear more from him, be sure to attend.

The sentence reads as if the speaker’s attendance depends on another person’s interest in hearing him speak. The revision clarifies that the speaker will be present, and if another person is interested in what the speaker has to say, he or she should go to the conference.

5.
Original: He said he had not rode the bike for several weeks.
Correct : He said he had not ridden the bike for several weeks.

"Rode" is correct for the simple past ("He rode the bike several weeks ago"), but for any other tense other than the simple present ("I ride the bike") and the simple future ("I will ride the bike"), "had ridden" is correct.

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