30 May 2017
Passed vs past: a guide for the perplexed
Deciding between ‘passed’ and ‘past’ isn’t always easy. But this will help…
27 February 2017
The lowdown on capital letters
A quick, easy guide on when and how to use capital letters.
17 December 2015
Are you using question marks correctly?
It’s not always clear when you can or can’t use a question mark. Read on to find out if you’re using them correctly.
9 November 2015
How to punctuate with quotation marks
How do you punctuate with quotation marks? Swot up by reading this guide.
8 October 2015
Is your writing in the active or passive voice?
Learn the difference between the active and passive voice. Once you know it, always use the active voice in your business writing!
11 September 2015
One word or two?
It’s easy to get held up in your writing when you’re not sure whether to use one word or two. Here’s a quick run through the most common confusions.
27 August 2015
‘Yes, I do’ or ‘Yes, I have’
It’s common to use ‘yes, I do’ and ‘yes, I have’ interchangeably. Here’s the one tip you need to get it right every time.
31 July 2015
‘Agree’ vs ‘agree on’
Do you ‘agree content’ or ‘agree on content’? Find out whether you can use ‘agree’ alone.
13 July 2015
Anticipate and expect
Did you know that ‘anticipate’ and ‘expect’ have different meanings? If this is news to you then it’s time to swot up!
10 July 2015
5 grammar ‘rules’ you can safely ignore
We were taught certain grammar ‘rules’ at school, which many of us continue to abide by. These are not in fact rules, so it’s time to identify and then ignore!
18 June 2015
QUIZ: The ultimate grammar and punctuation quiz (for people who are up for a real challenge)
You might have taken grammar and punctuation quizzes before, and maybe you did quite well. Maybe you think you’re a grammar guru. But you’ve never done a quiz like this before. This is the quiz to end all quizzes. And it’s only 10 questions. Will you rise to the challenge? Or will you be defeated?
1 June 2015
3 writing mistakes you don’t know you’re making
Do you love long sentences? Are you a sucker for the passive voice? You could be making some big-time writing mistakes. Here are three to watch out for.
27 May 2015
That and which (and when to use commas)
Choosing between ‘that’ and ‘which’ in a sentence isn’t always easy. And knowing whether to use commas adds another layer of complication. This post gives you simple and helpful advice.
21 April 2015
Can ‘they’ be singular?
In English, there’s no grammatically, politically and stylistically correct way to refer to unknown individuals. So what are your options?
1 April 2015
How to use and punctuate ‘however’
‘However’ is a word we’re all familiar with. Most people know what it means, feel comfortable with it and never give the word a second thought. Yet, it’s often used and punctuated incorrectly. So here’s a short guide to help you get it right.
4 March 2015
Fewer and less
Using ‘less’ instead of ‘fewer’ is common in informal speech, but these two words are not interchangeable. So what’s the correct usage?
3 February 2015
May and might
The rules about may and might are more relaxed than they used to be. Nowadays, the words are often interchangeable, but there are a few subtle differences worth knowing about.
27 January 2015
While and whilst
The differences between ‘while’ and ‘whilst’ and how to use the words properly.
10 December 2014
Infinitive verbs with or without to
Do you ‘help develop’ or ‘help to develop’ skills? This post explains the infinitive verb and how to use it in everyday writing.
24 November 2014
‘Data is’ or ‘data are’: is it worth fighting over Latin words?
Data, agenda, media, memoranda… These words spark debate in offices up and down the country. Should we still follow Latin form, or is it time to move on?
10 November 2014
Into or in to?
Most of us know instinctively whether to use ‘into’ or ‘in to’, but occasionally we need a helping hand…
3 October 2014
Should you worry about grammar mistakes on social media?
We all know that grammar, punctuation and typo mistakes are bad. Very bad. So bad that one misplaced apostrophe can cause you to doubt the entire education system and your value as a human being. Or so it would seem based on the public response to social media mistakes. But are we being too harsh on ourselves?
6 May 2014
Affect or effect?
Not sure whether to use ‘affect’ or ‘effect’ in your business writing? Otis will sort you out.
22 April 2014
Dangling participles and modifiers: what are they and how can you avoid them?
Dangling participles and modifiers are a sign of bad writing and can turn your great sentences into a joke. But do you know what they are and how to avoid them? If you’re not sure, read on…
17 April 2014
Tautology at work: don’t repeat yourself
Whether you offer a free gift or announce a major breakthrough, take a few moments to check you don’t repeat yourself in business writing.
25 March 2014
‘Compare with’ or ‘compare to’?
This week, we look at using ‘compare with’ and ‘compare to’. Which one is correct?
18 March 2014
Is it OK to split an infinitive?
This week, we’re diving head first into the controversial topic of split infinitives.
4 March 2014
Whoever vs whomever
This week, we’re tackling the tricky issue of choosing between ‘whoever’ and ‘whomever’.
18 February 2014
Using contractions in business writing
Is it OK to use contractions in business writing, such as ‘don’t’, ‘can’t’, ‘won’t’? Read on to find out.
11 February 2014
Uninterested vs disinterested
Is there a difference between uninterested and disinterested? Absolutely! And you don’t want to get them muddled up.