Words

Past vs Passed—Which One’s Right?

There are a number of pairs of words that are easily confused such as loose and lose (that extra “o” always seems to sneak in when I’m not looking, right Steve?), the proper use of lay and lie offers its own challenge and mistaking stared for starred can be easy enough to do.  I did […]

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Two Storms Converge

Here in the US there are two things dominating the conversation: nature and politics. We had this little storm called Sandy blow through this week.  It was a historically massive storm, stretching from Georgia all the way up into Canada, that battered the eastern mid-Atlantic seaboard and New England.  New Jersey and New York took […]

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Here’s the Wind-Up and the Pitch: Perfecting the Opening Paragraph

It was a dark and stormy night… Oh. I’m sorry. Have you heard that one before? The opening sentence and lead paragraph in a story or novel is, as they say, your only chance to make a first impression.  Like the cover of your book, that first paragraph might be the difference between a polite […]

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In Other Words… Having Fun with Euphemisms

Are there any Monty Python fans out there?  Are you familiar with the Dead Parrot Sketch?  In this skit, John Cleese attempts to return a parrot to the pet shop he bought it at because it’s dead but Michael Palin, playing the part of the dubious shop owner, contends that the parrot is merely sleeping, […]

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Word Power

Words are used everyday as a form of communication. I’m using a bunch right now. Many words are simple, garden variety words, others are vividly descriptive, some are poetic, some are vague while others are very specific. We use most of them without real thought, but there are some words that are loaded with a […]

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Ch-ch-ch-changes

I sat down on the subway this morning and placed my briefcase on my lap, leaning it up against the seat back in front of me. Just above the leather handle was a short sentence, legibly printed in black ink. A tiny bit of graffiti. A spontaneous piece of free speech. Six uncomplicated words.  Here […]

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