Mechanics

What’s the difference between grammar, punctuation, and mechanics?

The use of these terms in grammar and language study can be inconsistent and individual. There is sometimes even confusion within one document by the same author. We saw with previous post that some people label mistakes in usage (which primarily deals with the use of a word) as an error in grammar. And indeed …

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How to deal with dialogue

Writers, especially beginning ones, often struggle with dialogue. There are many aspects to handling dialogue in your writing, including distinguishing between direct quotation and indirect quotation. Since direct quotations repeat a person’s remarks in their own words without deviation, they require quotation marks; for example: Mary said, “I am ready.” Indirect quotations, on the other …

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How do I know when to capitalize a word?

Rules for capitalizing words are ones that have to be learned through memorization, repeated use, or consulting a resource like a dictionary or writing handbook. As with punctuation marks and other mechanics, the use of capital letters is a practice in written (and printed) rather than in spoken English. According to some college surveys, nearly …

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