Grammar Girl Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing

Grammar Girl Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing

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Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing


746 - How to Make Family Names Plural. How Come We Ask ‘How Come?’
Dec 5 • 15 min
Making last names plural? Addressing more than one sister-in-law? More than one Mister? We show you how to address them properly. Also, we investigate why we sometimes ask "How come?" instead of "Why?" LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn how you can get my…
745 - ‘More Than’ Versus ‘Over.’ Is a Hamburger a Sandwich?
Dec 2 • 19 min
The AP Stylebook changed its stance on using "over" to mean "more than." Plenty of people were shocked, but they shouldn't have been. And then we debate the linguistics of whether a hamburger is a sandwich. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn how you can get my…
744 - Cold Turkey, Talk Turkey, and More. The Weird Origin of the Cornucopia.
Nov 28 • 13 min
Have you ever wondered what cold turkey has to do with quitting a habit? We have the answer to that and we look at other turkey idioms. And continuing the Thanksgiving theme, we also explore the weird origin of the cornucopia. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn…
743 - How to Get Your Characters Right (Especially When They Aren’t Like You)
Nov 25 • 31 min
In this interview, Diana Pho, a two-time Hugo nominated editor with Tor.com Publishing, helped me understand the role of sensitivity readers and how to write a diverse cast of characters without completely screwing it up. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn how…
742 - Famous Quotations. Silent Letters.
Nov 21 • 16 min
You may think that quotation you love came from Plato or G. K. Chesterton, but are you sure? Also, we look at why it's tricky to to figure out why a letter is silent in certain words. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Ways to get my LinkedIn Learning course free:…
741 - Behind the Scenes in Publishing.
Nov 18 • 21 min
If you're interested in publishing a YA novel (or are just interested in how publishing works), this interview with Kat Brzozowski about Swoon Reads and what happens behind the scenes is for you. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn how you can get my LinkedIn…
740 - Do You Know When to Use Quotation Marks? Also, How to Create a House Style.
Nov 14 • 16 min
Do you know when to use quotation marks? How about single quotation marks? Also, you know about the major style guides (AP, Chicago, etc.), but do you also have your own house style guide? Here's why you should! LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn how you can get…
739 - The Problem with Sarcasm. Filthy Lucre.
Nov 11 • 15 min
People have been trying to create sarcasm punctuation marks for years, but the solution is already in our hands. Plus, have you ever wondered why we call money "filthy lucre"? We did! LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn how you can get my LinkedIn Learning course…
738 - Can a Boy Raised by Wolves Learn to Speak Human Language? It Depends.
Nov 7 • 14 min
The story of Victor of Aveyron, a boy who was raised by wolves and taught us about language. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn how you can get my LinkedIn Learning course free: https://t.co/coQuXJRtrT | Hallmark: https://hallmark.com/grammar Code:GRAMMAR |…
737 - Curtis Chen: Using NaNoWriMo to Kickstart Your Novel
Nov 4 • 35 min
How you can use NaNoWriMo to jumpstart your fiction writing. Plus, more extreme measures to move your writing forward…if you're up for it. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn how you can get my LinkedIn Learning course free: https://t.co/coQuXJRtrT | Waterpik:…
736 - Ghastly Words for Ghosts. Quid pro Quo.
Oct 31 • 15 min
In honor of Halloween, we look at ghastly words for ghosts. Also, people have been asking how to properly use the phrase "quid pro quo," so we have the answer. (Do you know the plural?) LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn how you can get my LinkedIn Learning…
735 - Dave Itzkoff on Writing a Biography of Robin Williams
Oct 28 • 35 min
LINKS AND SPONSORS | Ways to get my LinkedIn Learning course free: https://t.co/coQuXJRtrT | Capterra: https://capterra.com/grammar | GRAMMAR GIRL EMAIL NEWSLETTER | https://www.quickanddirtytips.com/newsletters | GRAMMAR POP iOS GAME | Optimized for…
734 - Ghost Words
Oct 24 • 12 min
In honor of Halloween, we talk about ghost words such as "phantomnation," "gravy," "twill," and more. Words that shouldn't exist. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn how you can get my LinkedIn Learning course free: https://t.co/coQuXJRtrT | Bona:…
733 - Why People Hate Words Like ‘Moist’
Oct 21 • 25 min
When people have a negative physical reaction to a specific word, it's called word aversion (not misophonia as some people mistakenly presume). "Moist," "pustule," and "panties" are just a few of the words that come up over and over. In this episode, I…
732 - How to Write a Conclusion. ‘Rebut’ or ‘Refute’?
Oct 17 • 10 min
Writing a conclusion can be the hardest part of writing an essay. We have help! Also, a listener asked me to explain the difference between "rebut" and "refute." LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn how you can get my LinkedIn Learning course free:…
731 - Compound Possession. ‘Friday’ or ‘On Friday’?
Oct 14 • 13 min
In this show, we answer two listener questions: 1. Should you write about "Bill and Ted's trip" or "Bill's and Ted's trip"? 2. Should you say you'll listen "Tuesday" or "on Tuesday"? LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn how you can get my LinkedIn Learning course…
730 - Turning a Podcast into a Novel: ‘The Bright Sessions’ to ‘The Infinite Noise’
Oct 10 • 33 min
Lauren Shippen, the creator of one of my new favorite audio dramas, "The Bright Sessions," talks about turning a podcast into a novel and about going from working alone to working on multiple projects and managing whole teams. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn…
729 - Making Words That End in Y Plural.’Primer’ Pronunciation.
Oct 7 • 12 min
If you've ever wondered why "primer" is sometimes pronounced "primmer," this show is for you! We also talk about why you make words that end in Y plural in different ways. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn how you can get my LinkedIn Learning course free:…
728 - How English Words Came Into French After World War II
Oct 3 • 18 min
French authorities tried to keep English out of their language, but “tank,” “bulldozer,” and “jeep” got the ball rolling, and it kept going from there. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Learn how you can get my LinkedIn Learning course free: https://t.co/coQuXJRtrT |…
727 - The Quirky Australian ‘Crime’ Tense. ‘Hopefully.’
Sep 30 • 17 min
A listener asked why Australians use the present perfect tense in a way you won't hear in British or American English. You'll often hear it in crime reports or on the radio. Also, we look at a slightly controversial use of the word "hopefully." LINKS AND…
726 - A Cup of Joe. ‘Smokey’ and ‘Smoky.’
Sep 26 • 14 min
In honor of National Coffee Day, we talk about the origin of coffee and all its nicknames. Plus, I'll help you remember the difference between "smoky" and "smokey" with a little help from Smokey Bear. LINKS AND SPONSORS | TED Talks Daily:…
725 - Interviewing, Story Structure, and Writing Tools with Jonathan Small
Sep 23 • 38 min
If you've ever been nervous before interviewing someone, struggled to write a good lede, or just want to get some tips on handy tools for writers, this interview with Jonathan Small is for you. LINKS AND SPONSORS | TED Talks Daily:…
724 - Why Esperanto Is an Amazing Language. ‘Fall’ or ‘Autumn’?
Sep 19 • 13 min
Created on purpose and easy to learn, Esperanto will amaze you. Once you learn the origin of "fall," you'll look at trees in a whole new way. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Bona: http:/bona.com/grammar | Masterclass: http://masterclass.com/grammar| Grammar Girl…
723 - Grammar Girl #723. Tips for Fact Checking. Why We Use the Term ‘Watershed Moment.’
Sep 16 • 13 min
Learn from our fact checking tips that come from years of experience. Also, we answer a listener question about why we call something a "watershed moment." LINKS AND SPONSORS | Merrill Financial Advisor Development Program: http:/careers.bankofamerica.com…
722 - ‘Math’ or ‘Maths’? Irregular Verbs.
Sep 12 • 16 min
Have you ever wondered why the British say "maths" and "in hospital" and Americans say "math" and "in the hospital"? We have some answers. Also, we look at why the most common verbs tend to be irregular. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Native:…
721 - Verbing Nouns. ‘It Is I’ or ‘It Is Me’?
Sep 9 • 14 min
Alan wonders what to think about his co-workers "solutioning" problems. Also, we investigate whether you should tell people "It is I" or "It is me." LINKS AND SPONSORS | Merrill Financial Advisor Development Program: http:/careers.bankofamerica.com |…
720 - Getting Your Tricky Conditionals Right. Wheelhouse.
Sep 5 • 17 min
We think there are better ways to talk about conditionals (such as "If Squiggly knew the answer…") than to use the vague terms first, second, and third conditionals. Also we look at why people talk about things being "in their wheelhouse." LINKS AND…
719 - Why ‘Literally’ Doesn’t Mean ‘Literally’ Anymore. Video Games for Language Learning.
Sep 2 • 18 min
If you hate how people misuse words like "literally" and "awesome," at least you can learn that there's a name for that kind of misuse: semantic bleaching. Also, have you ever considered using World of Warcraft or Final Fantasy XIV to learn a language?…
718 - Writing Scripts and Speeches. Ask and Aks.
Aug 29 • 16 min
Writing for speech is different from writing for print. The "aks" pronunciation for "ask" has a nearly 1000-year history. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Magoosh: http://magoosh.com code: GRAMMAR | Babbel: http://babbel.com | Blinkist: http://blinkist.com/grammar…
717 - Words that Sound Funny
Aug 26 • 14 min
Use these tricks to get a laugh. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Merrill Financial Advisor Development Program: http:/careers.bankofamerica.com | Magoosh: http://magoosh.com code: GRAMMAR | Proactiv: http://proactiv.com/grammar | Grammar Girl Email Newsletter |…
716 - What’s Up With Words That Are Spelled the Same but Sound Different?
Aug 22 • 13 min
SUS-pect and sus-PECT. IN-valid and in-VALID. English is filled with words that are spelled the same but sound different. We dug in and found a few interesting reasons. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Magoosh: http://magoosh.com code: GRAMMAR | Bank of America.:…
715 - POV. Plus ‘Tinderella,’ ‘phubbing,’ and more words at the intersection of relationships and technology.
Aug 19 • 16 min
We rock. You rock. They rock. Understanding point of view in fiction. "Tinderella," "phubbing," and more words at the intersection of relationships and technology. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Merrill Financial Advisor Development Program:…
714 - Eponyms: Cardigan, Dunce, Quisling, and More.
Aug 15 • 18 min
Some words get their names from people, and when they do, the stories are usually fascinating. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Magoosh: http://magoosh.com code: GRAMMAR | True & Co.: http://trueandco.com/grammar code: GRAMMAR | Babbel: http://babbel.com | Grammar…
713 - More Apostrophe Mayhem. Dyslexia Writing Tips
Aug 12 • 18 min
One of the most common questions I get is how to make a word like "Kansas" possessive. There isn't a right or wrong answer, but I can help you decide which is best for you. Also, we have tips on how to make your work easier to read for people with…
712 - Apostrophe Catastrophe. What (or Who) Is a Cipher?
Aug 8 • 17 min
It's not your fault apostrophes are confusing. We have help. Also, I called someone a "cipher," and my husband didn't know what that meant. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Magoosh: http://magoosh.com code: GRAMMAR | True & Co.: http://trueandco.com/grammar code:…
711 - Misheard Song Lyrics and Eggcorns. The Ampersand.
Aug 5 • 25 min
When you mishear song lyrics, the resulting (often funny) error is called a mondegreen. We have the story about why and the run-down on similar funny errors. Also, did you know the ampersand used to be the last "letter" in the alphabet? LINKS AND SPONSORS…
710 - Vacay. Why Some People Call Green Peppers ‘Mangoes’
Aug 1 • 14 min
It's time to take off, and we have 10 words to describe it. Also, we dig in to an interesting mystery: Why some people call green peppers "mangoes." LINKS AND SPONSORS | Magoosh: http://magoosh.com code:GRAMMAR | Audible: http://audible.com/GG or text GG…
709 - Surprise! The History of Semicolons Is Exciting.
Jul 29 • 31 min
I talked with Cecelia Watson, author of the new book "Semicolon" about how grammar writers in the 1800s became fabulously wealthy, struggled to create rules, and had vicious arguments; and we talked about how researching the book changed her approach to…
708 - Why Alcohol Is ‘Hard.’ ‘Phenomena’ or ‘Phenomenon’?
Jul 25 • 14 min
A listener asked why we call some kinds of alcohol hard drinks and spirits, so we found the answer! Also, I'll help you remember the difference between "phenomenon" and "phenomena." LINKS AND SPONSORS | Magoosh: http://magoosh.com code:GRAMMAR | Blinkist:…
707 - How and Why the Internet Is Changing Language
Jul 22 • 32 min
Gretchen McCulloch studies how people use language on the internet, and today we talked about her new book, "Because Internet." I bet you'll recognize yourself or your friends in her insights. I did! LINKS AND SPONSORS | Embark: http://embarkvet.com promo…
706 - Sometimes It’s Not a Bad Idea to Dumb Down Your Language.
Jul 18 • 12 min
Why sometimes it's not a bad idea to dumb down your language. LINKS AND SPONSORS | True & Co: http://trueandco.com/grammar code:GRAMMAR | Grammar Girl Email Newsletter | https://www.quickanddirtytips.com/newsletters | Grammar Girl's AP style webinar:…
705 - ‘Blue Collar,’ ‘Bluestocking,’ and ‘the Blue Hair Brigade.’ ‘Oral’ Versus ‘Verbal.’
Jul 15 • 14 min
We talk about the origins of the phrases "blue collar," "bluestocking," and "blue hair," and discuss whether you should follow a rule you may not have even heard before: Don't use "verbal" to mean "spoken." LINKS AND SPONSORS | Blinkist:…
704 - Present Tense When Writing About Fiction. The Poop Emoji and Eggcorns.
Jul 11 • 10 min
If you're writing about fiction, especially time-shifting fiction, it can be tricky figuring out whether to use present tense or past tense. We have help! Also, I answer a listener question about a funny mix up about the poop emoji. LINKS AND SPONSORS |…
703 - Why There Are 9 Different Ways to Pronounce the Letter T
Jul 8 • 25 min
We count nine different allophones of the letter T. Odds are good you'll recognize them all (and some of them may annoy you). LINKS AND SPONSORS | Babbel: http://babbel.com/grammar | True & Co: http://trueandco.com/grammar CODE: GRAMMAR | Bombas:…
702 - ‘All of a Sudden’ or ‘All of the Sudden’? ‘Baited’ or ‘Bated’ Breath?
Jul 4 • 10 min
I had a listener insist the wrong way of saying "suddenly" was right, so I had to look into it. Also, I'll help you spell "bated breath" properly (and explain why it looks so weird). LINKS AND SPONSORS | Babbel: http://babbel.com/grammar | Grammar Girl…
701 - ‘Biweekly’ or ‘Semiweekly’? ‘Foward’ and ‘Forward.’
Jul 1 • 11 min
Today I have a Quick and Dirty Tip about the difference between “biweekly” and “semiweekly,” and I respond to a listener question about why I pronounce “forward” without the R. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Babbel: http://babbel.com/grammar | Grammar Girl Email…
700 - When to Capitalize ‘Google.’ Why Zero is ‘Love’ in Tennis.
Jun 27 • 11 min
Today I answer a listener question about how to write "Google" when you use it as a verb, and we talk about the strange scoring system in tennis. Wimbledon is upon us! LINKS AND SPONSORS | Blinkist: http://blinkist.com/grammar | Grammar Girl Email…
699 - When to Capitalize Computer Terms. StetWalk
Jun 24 • 8 min
Today I answer listener questions about how to write about a Word document, a PDF file, or a zip file. And learn how to play along with #StetWalk! LINKS AND SPONSORS | Stitcher App: http://stitcherapp.com/grammar | Grammar Girl Email Newsletter:…
698 - ‘Subpoena.’ When To Capitalize ‘The’ in Titles.
Jun 20 • 6 min
I could never remember how to spell "subpoena" until I came up with a memory trick! Also, we go over the tricky cases of when to capitalize the word "the" in titles such as The New York Times and The Chicago Manual of Style. Sometimes you do, and…
697 - What Anyone Can Learn From the College Essay Process
Jun 17 • 28 min
Even if you're not applying to college right now, the format of the college essay has a lot to teach about writing and self-reflection. A college essay can be an exploratory journey that ends up being about much more than getting into college. College…
696 - Hyphens in Ages. The Emphatic ‘This.’
Jun 13 • 9 min
We talk about when to use (and not use) hyphens in ages, and when it's OK to say, "I listen to THIS podcast that covers language" instead of "I listen to A podcast that covers language." LINKS AND SPONSORS | Start With This:…
695 - ‘Armageddon’ or ‘Apocalypse’? Numbers in Dialogue.
Jun 10 • 13 min
Watching the new show "Good Omens," we started wondering about the difference between Armageddon and the apocalypse. Also after helping a friend with an editing dispute about numbers in dialogue, we wanted to pass on some advice about style guides and…
694 - Country Names and “The”: The Ukraine or Ukraine. Theater Idioms.
Jun 6 • 16 min
You used to hear people say "the Ukraine," but now it's just "Ukraine." We know why! Plus, in honor of the Tony Awards, we talk about idioms from the theater. LINKS AND SPONSORS | How to Be Yourself Book: http://bit.ly/beyourselfgrammar | Bombas:…
693 - What’s Wrong with Saying Something Is ‘Very Unique’?
Jun 3 • 19 min
What's wrong with saying something is "very unique"? Plus, autological words like "longer." LINKS AND SPONSORS | Family Ghosts Podcast: https://familyghostspodcast.com/ | Audible: https://audible.com/GG or text GG to 500-500 | Aspiration App Grammar Girl…
692 - Godzilla, Cryptids, and Dilemma Comments.
May 30 • 11 min
Merriam-Webster added the word “cryptid” to its dictionary, and “Godzilla: King of the Monsters” is hitting theaters, so it seemed like a good time to talk about a few monster words and to answer an important question: Is Godzilla a cryptid? LINKS AND…
691 - BONUS: Introducing Science Rules! with Bill Nye
May 27 • 2 min
Bill Nye is on a mission to change the world—one phone call at a time. On his new podcast, Science Rules!, he tackles the curliest questions on just about anything in the universe. Perhaps you’ve wondered: Should I stop eating cheeseburgers to combat…
690 - The Spelling Bee Kids
May 23 • 22 min
The author of "Beeline" reveals where those funny example sentences come from in the spelling bee and what the success of young spellers can tell us about Generation Z. LINKS AND SPONSORS | Grammar Girl Email Newsletter:…
689 - More or most? Majority or plurality? The many (how many?) ways to describe amounts.
May 20 • 9 min
How many do you need for a "majority." When "a couple" isn't two. And more.
688 - Dangling Participles
May 16 • 9 min
What are participles and why do they dangle? LINKS AND SPONSORS | Graduation Sweepstakes: http://bit.ly/qdtlifeaftercollege | Grammar Girl's AP style webinar: http://bit.ly/GrammarWebinar2019 | GRAMMAR POP iOS GAME | Optimized for iPad:…
687 - What It’s Like to Be a Book Editor and Translator
May 13 • 17 min
Palgrave Macmillan executive editor Elisabeth Dyssegaard is from Denmark and also works as a translator. LINKS AND SPONSORS | http://bombas.com/grammar | Grammar Girl's AP style webinar: http://bit.ly/GrammarWebinar2019 | GRAMMAR POP iOS GAME | Optimized…
686 - The ‘Dilemma’ Dilemma. ‘Big Bang Theory” Words and Language.
May 9 • 16 min
The 'Dilemma' Dilemma. 'Big Bang Theory" Words and Language. LINKS AND SPONSORS | http://stamps.com Code:GRAMMAR | http://startwiththispodcast.com | Grammar Girl's AP style webinar: http://bit.ly/GrammarWebinar2019 | GRAMMAR POP iOS GAME | Optimized for…
685 - How to Find Work as a Freelance Writer. Adventure.
May 6 • 18 min
Tips for new graduates or anyone who is trying to get started as a freelance writer. Plus, the adventurous origin of the word "adventure." FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL | YouTube: http://bit.ly/YoutubeGrammar | Twitter: http://bit.ly/TwitterGrammarGirl | Facebook:…
684 - ‘Unquote’ or ‘End Quote’? Cinco de Mayo. Horse Idioms.
May 2 • 14 min
Today we have a couple of fun, timely segments (Cinco de Mayo! The Kentucky Derby!) and we answer a listener question about whether Grammar Girl is misspeaking. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL | YouTube: http://bit.ly/YoutubeGrammar | Twitter:…
683 - ‘So’ and ‘So That’: What Type of Conjunction Are They?
Apr 29 • 24 min
‘So’ and ‘So That’: Coordinating or Subordinating Conjunction? FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL | YouTube: http://bit.ly/YoutubeGrammar | Twitter: http://bit.ly/TwitterGrammarGirl | Facebook: http://bit.ly/FacebookGrammarGirl | Pinterest:…
682 - Do You Drop Your T’s? ‘Sneaked’ and ‘Snuck.’
Apr 25 • 17 min
Young women are leading language change again! This time, it's dropping T's in words like "Vermont" and "important." Also, we look at how "snuck" is sneaking up on "sneaked." FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL | YouTube: http://bit.ly/YoutubeGrammar | Twitter:…
681 - ‘The Dictionary of Difficult Words,’ an Interview with Jane Solomon
Apr 22 • 35 min
Doppelganger, estival, and funambulist. Jane Solomon shares the story behind her new book, "The Dictionary of Difficult Words." FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL | YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl |Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl | Facebook:…
680 - Wakandan, Groot, and Other Languages of the Marvel Universe. Easter and Passover.
Apr 18 • 16 min
Wakandan, Groot, and more. The movies in the Marvel universe are filled with interesting real and made-up languages. Plus, did you know Easter and Passover are linguistically related? FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL | YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl |…
679 - Brussels sprouts? Scotch eggs? Swedish meatballs? Which food names can you trust?
Apr 15 • 16 min
Some foods really do come from a certain city or region, others have names that are tied to the location but not in the way you think, and some are outright fakers. We get to the bottom of Brussels sprouts, Scotch eggs, Swedish meatballs, French dressing,…
678 - Moolah, Clams, and Scratch. God, Godsend, and Godfather.
Apr 11 • 18 min
Paying our taxes made us think about slang words for money, and all the upcoming religious holidays made us wonder which “god” words to capitalize. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL | YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl | Twitter:…
677 - BONUS: LeVar Burton Reads
Apr 8 • 4 min
BONUS: LeVar Burton Reads is back! Subscribe and catch all-new episodes at applepodcasts.com/levar. | FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL | YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl | Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl | Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl…
676 - The Language of ‘Game of Thrones’
Apr 4 • 13 min
There’s so much excitement about the ‘Game of Thrones’ finale that we just had to include a segment about on it this week’s show. Not just because we love dragons and swords—we do! — but because a core part of the series has been the languages the…
675 - Why Verbs Like ‘Witness’ Are Weird
Apr 1 • 18 min
A listener asked why a sentence using the verb “witness” sounded weird, and we found a surprising answer. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL | YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl | Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl | Facebook:…
674 - How You Can Benefit Year-Round from NaNoWriMo
Mar 28 • 20 min
Grant Faulkner’s organization has worked with hundreds of thousands of writers, and he has some advice for you. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL | YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl | Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl | Facebook:…
673 - Schwa-ify This! Scrabble Stories
Mar 25 • 16 min
A scene from “The Princess Bride” will help you understand the schwa. Plus, how one Scrabble tournament got out of hand. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL | YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl | Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl | Facebook:…
672 - How a Semicolon Brought Two Writers Together
Mar 21 • 23 min
Jennifer Miller and Jason Feifer, authors of “Mr. Nice Guy,” talk about how the semicolon brought them together, how they wrangle working as a writing team, and more. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL | YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl | Twitter:…
671 - Why We Have Both ‘Color’ and ‘Colour’
Mar 18 • 7 min
British versus American spelling. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL | YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl | Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl | Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl | Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/realgrammargirl | Instagram:…
670 - Equinox. Is Irish the Same as Gaelic?
Mar 14 • 16 min
What Is the Equinox? Is Irish the Same as Gaelic? | FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL | YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl | Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl | Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl | Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/realgrammargirl…
669 - ‘Red Tape,’ ‘Red Herring,’ ‘Paint the Town Red,’ and More ‘Red’ Idioms.
Mar 11 • 12 min
This week, we investigate the origin of “red tape” and other “red” idioms. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest:…
668 - What’s Wrong with ‘These Ones’? Faith and Begorrah, We Have Irish Phrases for St. Patrick’s Day!
Mar 7 • 14 min
Faith and begorrah, we have Irish phrases for St. Patrick's Day! Plus, a listener asks whether it's wrong to say "these ones" and "those ones." FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl…
667 - Why ducks say “quack-quack” in English but “ga-ga” in Japanese.
Mar 4 • 9 min
FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/realgrammargirl Instagram: http://instagram.com/thegrammargirl LinkedIn:…
666 - Double Negatives.
Feb 28 • 11 min
In this week’s Grammar Girl podcast, we talk about why double negatives aren’t always wrong. You just need to be careful with them. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
665 - Language News Chat
Feb 25 • 35 min
Mignon and Neal talk about language influencing memory, OFOM, university language programs, and more. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl…
664 - Benjamin Dreyer and His Unusual Pet Peeves
Feb 21 • 38 min
New York Times bestselling author Benjamin Dreyer talks about his pet peeves, how he found his voice, why his book largely ignores AP style, and more. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl…
663 - D-Day. Why I Want a Salad-Salad.
Feb 18 • 14 min
What does the “D” in “D-Day” mean? What makes a salad-salad different from a plain old salad? FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest:…
662 - Never Misspell ‘Bureaucracy’ Again.
Feb 14 • 18 min
When to use “racket” and “racquet,” never forget how to spell “bureaucracy” again, the origin of winter storm words. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
661 - How Paula Brackston picks her characters’ names and uses language to set a tone.
Feb 11 • 23 min
Mignon and Paula Brackston (author of “The Witch’s Daughter” and “The Little Shop of Found Things”) talk about how Paula picks her characters’ names, how she uses language to set a tone, and how she juggles working on multiple books at once. FOLLOW…
660 - ‘Irregardless’ or ‘Regardless’? Crime Words.
Feb 7 • 18 min
Why do people say “irregardless” and where do we get words like “sleuth,” “red herring,” and “gumshoe”? FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl…
659 - Normans, Ralls, and Voicemail
Feb 4 • 3 min
I want you to share your family’s word stories, and I tell one of my own to get you started. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest:…
658 - ‘Wage,’ ‘Wager,’ and ‘Wed’
Jan 31 • 15 min
It’s a Super Bowl episode! Grammar Girl investigates how “wager” is related to “wed” and “mortgage.” Why does the saying “The wages of sin is death,” treat “wages” as singular when it’s most often plural? Plus, what does it mean to ‘punt’ something?…
657 - ‘Tip of the Hat” or ‘Tip Your Hand’? ‘Yeah No.’
Jan 24 • 19 min
This week, we figure out why you tip both your hat and your hand, and then we take a fascinating look at why people use the seemingly illogical phrase “Yeah no.” FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter:…
656 - ‘Relapse’ or ‘Recur’? ‘Kneeled’ or ‘Knelt.’ ’Methinks.’
Jan 17 • 13 min
This week, I have a Quick and Dirty Tip about the difference between the words “relapse” and “recur,” another Quick and Dirty Tip about the difference between “kneeled” and “knelt,” and a meaty middle about the word “methinks.” Methinks you’ll like it!…
655 - ‘Myriad’ or ‘Myriad Of’? What Is a Run-On Sentence?
Jan 10 • 13 min
This week, we talk about the controversy over “a myriad of” and (clutch your pearls!) “myriads” and explain why a run-on sentence isn’t just a really long sentence. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter:…
654 - ‘Stint’ or ‘Stent’? How to Pronounce ‘Coyote.’
Jan 3 • 17 min
This week, I give you a memory trick—based on an amazing story from history—for remembering the difference between “stint” and “stent,” and we look at why people pronounce “coyote” at least five different ways. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube:…
653 - How to Use an Asterisk. Journaling.
Dec 27, 2018 • 12 min
This week, we learn the ins and outs of using an asterisk and talk about the many ways to keep a journal. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl…
652 - ‘Purposely’ or ‘Purposefully’? Yule.
Dec 20, 2018 • 12 min
In this week’s Grammar Girl podcast, I help you stop misusing “purposefully” and delve into the history of yuletide. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
651 - ‘Capitulate’ or ‘Recapitulate’? Colons.
Dec 13, 2018 • 12 min
This week, we investigate why “capitulate” and “recapitulate” have such different meanings when they seem so similar, and we review how to use colons. It’s probably more complicated than you think because different style guides have different…
650 - ‘Wreaked’ or ‘Wrought’? ‘Crescendo.’ Could We Understand Aliens?
Dec 6, 2018 • 15 min
This week, we’ll explore the difference between “wreaked” and “wrought,” learn a trick to never misuse or misspell “crescendo” again, and answer the question: Could we understand alien beings? FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube:…
649 - ‘Ado’ or ‘Adieu’? Pronouns and Antecedents
Nov 29, 2018 • 15 min
This week, we’ll tease apart the ado/adieu eggcorn and make some funny sentences using pronoun/antecedent errors. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
648 - Does Your Language Influence How You Think?
Nov 22, 2018 • 24 min
The Sapir-Whorf hypothesis claims that the language you speak determines the way you think. It’s been widely debunked, but we go through some studies that seem to support it and some studies that don’t. It’s all fascinating! FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube:…
647 - Pronoun Order. ‘Flier’ or ‘Flyer.’ The Plural of ‘Mouse.’
Nov 15, 2018 • 13 min
This week, I have a Quick and Dirty Tip about pronouns and how you should order them, another Quick and Dirty Tip about how to spell “flyer” (or is that “flier”?), and a meaty middle about the plural of the word “mouse.” FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube:…
646 - ‘Blond’ or ‘Blonde’? How ‘Trolloping’ Became a Word.
Nov 8, 2018 • 16 min
Have you ever wondered why we have two ways to spell “blond(e)”? Also, I share some fascinating American frontier history that reveals how “trolloping’ became a word. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/grammargirl Twitter:…
645 - Interview with New York Times bestselling author Courtney Summers
Nov 1, 2018 • 17 min
This week is a special show. I interview Courtney Summers, the author of the New York Times best-selling novel “Sadie,” and learn what it was like to work on a book that also had a podcast component and what inspires Courtney to write such dark novels.…
644 - ‘Sit’ or ‘Set’? Monster Names.
Oct 25, 2018 • 9 min
This week, teaching a dog to sit can help you remember “sit” versus “set,” and we get ready for Halloween with words that come from monster names. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl…
643 - ‘In the Limelight.’ ‘A’ or ‘An’?
Oct 18, 2018 • 14 min
This week, we figure out why we say people are “in the limelight,” and we explain the rules for using “a” and “an”—many people misunderstand the rules (or were taught wrong). FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
642 - ‘Regard’ Versus ‘Regards.’ Languages Without Numbers.
Oct 11, 2018 • 15 min
This week, we tease out when to use “regard” and when to use “regards,” and we learn about fascinating languages that don’t have numbers. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest:…
641 - ‘Myself.’ ‘Get the Skinny.’
Oct 4, 2018 • 17 min
This week, I help people learn how to use the word "myself" (and talk about some interesting dialects) and investigate about why we say we "get the skinny" on something. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
640 - Can a Screw Screw Itself into a Board? (Middle Voice)
Sep 27, 2018 • 19 min
This week, we look at an interesting kind of sentence that’s written in the “middle voice.” FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/realgrammargirl Instagram:…
639 - Great Paragraphs. Falling off the Turnip Truck.
Sep 20, 2018 • 10 min
Go beyond formulaic essay rules and create paragraphs that will hook your readers. Also, we figure out why people say they didn't just fall off the turnip truck. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
638 - ‘None.’ How Pirates Talked.
Sep 13, 2018 • 12 min
Some people say only “none is” is right, but we tackle “none are.” Plus, we have an extra fun segment about pirate-speak for Talk Like a Pirate Day. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl…
637 - ‘MacGyver.’ ‘Semicolons.’
Sep 6, 2018 • 10 min
Last week, I talked about “MacGyvering” things, so this week, I explain what I meant. Plus, I talk about one of the most contentious punctuation marks: the semicolon. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
636 - ‘To Boot.’ Duck Tape. ‘Can’ and ‘May.’ Pronouns.
Aug 30, 2018 • 16 min
This week, I have more evidence that “quick and dirty” is from the Pacific Northwest, why we say “to boot,” whether the correct name is “duct tape” or “duck tape,” whether it’s really wrong to say “Can I go to the bathroom,” and an excerpt from an…
635 - ‘Quick and Dirty.’ ‘Momentarily.’ Short Subjects.
Aug 23, 2018 • 13 min
For everyone who has wondered why we’re called the “Quick and Dirty Tips” podcast network, I have the origin story. Plus, we’ll talk about how annoyed you should get when people use “momentarily” to mean “in a moment” and why you should favor shorter…
634 - ‘Rack’ or ‘Wrack’? How to Eliminate Adverbs.
Aug 16, 2018 • 9 min
Did you know that “wrack” is a word for seaweed? I didn’t! Also, getting rid of adverbs usually improves your writing, but not always. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest:…
BONUS: Words for Color
Aug 14, 2018 • 11 min
Hear one of my favorite segments from a recent Stitcher Premium bonus episode. These are normally available for only Stitcher Premium subscribers, but we want you to see what you’re missing! Subscribe to Grammar Girl at Stitcher Premium and use the code…
633 - Is That Comment Facetious, Sarcastic, or Sardonic? Cleft Sentences.
Aug 9, 2018 • 15 min
Is That Comment Facetious, Sarcastic, or Sardonic? Cleft Sentences. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/realgrammargirl Instagram:…
632 - ‘Ask’ as a Noun. Ships as ‘She.’
Aug 2, 2018 • 13 min
This week we answer a listener question about “the ask” and look at whether it’s OK to call boats, cars, and countries “she.” FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest:…
631 - Anniversaries. Conversate.
Jul 26, 2018 • 15 min
It’s the 12th anniversary of the Grammar Girl podcast! Or is that the 12-year anniversary? No! In honor of this illustrious event, we look at why people say they “conversate” and why they may want to think twice about it. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter:…
630 - Who Wrote the ABC Song? Shark Idioms!
Jul 19, 2018 • 13 min
This week, we talk about who wrote the alphabet song that helps people learn their ABCs, and we investigate six silly idioms about sharks. #SharkWeek FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl…
629 - ‘Gourmet’ or ‘Gourmand’? Why July 14 Is Called Bastille Day.
Jul 12, 2018 • 13 min
In honor of Bastille Day (July 14), we talk about the difference between a gourmet and a gourmand, and we talk about words the French and English use to insult each other. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
628 - Why ‘Bag’ and ‘Beg’ Sound the same to some people? Does ‘Texas’ Mean ‘Crazy’?
Jul 5, 2018 • 14 min
This week, we’ll talk about why I pronounce the word “aggravate” in a way that irritated many of you, the difference between “interment” and “internment,” and why Norwegians use the word “Texas” to mean “wild” or “crazy.” FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter:…
627 - How to Write a Great Cover Letter. ‘Kinda’ and ‘Wanna’: Real Words or Not?
Jun 28, 2018 • 13 min
How to write a great cover letter. Also, we say “kinda,” “wanna,” and “gonna,” so why don’t we write them? FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest:…
626 - ‘Aggravate’ Versus ‘Irritate’ What Is a Functional Shift?
Jun 21, 2018 • 10 min
Some people say you shouldn’t use “aggravate” to mean “irritate” or “annoy.” It has to do with the word’s origin. Also, does it irritate you when people use “invite” as a noun? FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
625 - ‘Dinner’ or ‘Supper’? How to Write a Thank-You Note
Jun 14, 2018 • 15 min
‘Dinner’ or ‘Supper’? How to Write a Thank-You Note FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/realgrammargirl Instagram: http://instagram.com/thegrammargirl…
624 - ‘Trooper’ and ‘Trouper.” Why Is It Called a Spelling Bee?
Jun 7, 2018 • 12 min
This week, we talk about the difference between a “trooper” and a “trouper,” about why a spelling bee is called a “bee,” and about a bunch of other “bee” idioms. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
623 - ‘Calvary’ or ‘Cavalry’? Spelling Bee Interview.
May 31, 2018 • 20 min
If you have trouble remembering how to pronounce "cavalry," I have a memory trick for you. Plus, if you love the spelling bee (or are just curious about how it works), I have a great interview with Paige Kimble, the executive director of the Scripps…
622 - Is a Troop One Person or a Group? Repetition
May 24, 2018 • 15 min
Is a troop one person or a group, and what's up with obviously repetitive phrases such as "It is what it is"? FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Troops: http://bit.ly/troop-troops Repetition: http://bit.ly/drink-drink FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter:…
621 - ‘Council’ or ‘Counsel’? Direct and Indirect Quotations. Oxymorons.
May 17, 2018 • 11 min
People have been confusing "council" and "counsel" since the 16th century. Sometimes you put single words such as "yes" and "no" in quotation marks, and sometimes you don't. We investigate three weird oxymorons: "bridegroom," "spendthrift," and…
620 - When to Capitalize ‘Mom.’ In the Doldrums.
May 10, 2018 • 16 min
Whether you capitalize "mom" depends on how you are using the word, and did you know that "the doldrums" are an actual location? FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Capitalizing "Mom": http://bit.ly/capitalize-mom In the Doldrums: http://bit.ly/in-the-doldrums…
619 - Co-worker. Barefaced and Baldfaced Lies. Mixed Metaphors.
May 3, 2018 • 13 min
Co-worker. Barefaced and Baldfaced Lies. Mixed Metaphors. FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Does Co-Worker Always Take a Hyphen? http://bit.ly/co-worker-hyphen Barefaced or Baldfaced Lie? http://bit.ly/barefaced-baldfaced Mixed Metaphors:…
618 - Jazz and Thunder. Say Your Piece (or Peace)?
Apr 26, 2018 • 13 min
Are sports team names singular or plural? Do you say your piece or say your peace? FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE http://bit.ly/sports-teams http://bit.ly/say-your-piece FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
617 - ‘Lay’ and ‘Lie.’ ‘Grill’ and ‘Grille.’ ‘Warsh.’
Apr 19, 2018 • 12 min
This week, we talk about why people say "warsh" instead of "wash"(it's called in the intrusive R), about why we have two spellings for the word that sounds like "grill," and how to remember the difference between "lay" and "lie." FOLLOW ALONG ON THE…
616 - The Prodigal Tongue. Odoriferous. Battle Royale.
Apr 12, 2018 • 20 min
This week, I have a delightful excerpt from Lynne Murphy’s new book “The Prodigal Tongue” about the differences between British and American English, a tip about words for smells, and a tidbit about the term “battle royale.” FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter:…
615 - Humor with Adverbs. Noisome. Receipts. Case Quarters.
Apr 5, 2018 • 18 min
This week, we talk about how adverbs can be squishy in what they modify and how that can lead to funny double meanings, about the difference between “noisy” and “noisome,” about why people say they “have the receipts,” and about the meaning and origin of…
614 - Illeism. Named For or After? Misinformation and Disinformation.
Mar 29, 2018 • 16 min
When famous characters or people like Hercule Poirot and LeBron James refer to themselves by their own name, it’s called illeism, and it can actually be a useful psychological technique. Then, we explore the difference between being named for someone and…
613 - Dictionary.com Starts Defining Emoji (an interview with Jane Solomon)
Mar 22, 2018 • 29 min
Dictionary.com has added emoji definitions to its site, and I have an interview with the lexicographer behind the decision, Jane Solomon. Emoji are a lot more linguistically complex than you may imagine. Plus, I remind you of the difference between “aw”…
612 - The Pin/Pen Merger. American. ‘Half-Staff’ or ‘Half-Mast’?
Mar 15, 2018 • 20 min
This week, we talk about why some people say “pin” and “pen” the same way, why citizens of the United States call themselves “Americans” when other people live on the American continent too, and why flags can be flown at half-mast or half-staff. FOLLOW…
611 - Pudding. “There Are” Sentences. Winning Limerick
Mar 8, 2018 • 13 min
This week, we talk about why we say “the proof is in the pudding,” why “there are” sentences can be so confusing (what the heck is the subject in such as sentence?), and read the winning limerick from the ACES National Grammar Day limerick contest. FOLLOW…
610 - Top 10 Grammar Myths. How 13 Dog Breeds Got Their Names.
Mar 1, 2018 • 14 min
Celebrate National Grammar Day (March 4) by forsaking these common language myths. Also, enter our limerick contest and we might read your limerick in the next Grammar Girl podcast. (Details: http://bit.ly/ACES_limerick2018). Also, some dog breed names…
609 - Pull Idioms. Surprising Food Names. Dillydally.
Feb 22, 2018 • 13 min
You’re sure to be surprised by the origin of at least one of these idioms that use the word “pull.” Plus, we talk about foods that get their names from the dish in which they’re cooked and the difference between “dilly dilly” and “dillydally.” FOLLOW…
608 - Dilly Dilly. How Many Prepositions Can You Put in a Row?
Feb 15, 2018 • 15 min
This week, we look a sentence from “Cannery Row” and wonder how it can have so many prepositions in a row, and we find the origin of “dilly dilly.” FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl…
607 - Brainstorming. Call Out Sick? Synesis.
Feb 8, 2018 • 14 min
This week, we talk about tricks to help you get started writing a new essay, article, or novel; whether it’s wrong to say you “call out sick”; and what’s up with a grammatical concept called “synesis” that can let you break some rules. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL…
606 - Levidromes, Tom Swifty Jokes, and new OED Words.
Feb 1, 2018 • 13 min
Levidromes, Tom Swifty Jokes, and new OED Words. Plus, how “phony” is related to a jewel con. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/realgrammargirl Instagram:…
605 - A Homophone Error at the SAG Awards. Lectern or Podium? Capitalizing Award Names
Jan 25, 2018 • 13 min
How a homophone mix up led to Judi Dench bread jokes. Also, the difference between a lectern, a podium, and a dais, and a Quick and Dirty Tip about capitalizing award names. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
BONUS: Introducing Launch
Jan 21, 2018 • 14 min
This week, I’m excited to share a bonus clip from a new podcast called Launch. Three out of five people dream of writing a book. Few follow through. What does it take to take that from dream to reality? Screenwriter John August (Go, Big Fish, Charlie and…
604 - Origin of ‘Gerrymandering.’ Is ‘Data’ Singular or Plural?
Jan 18, 2018 • 11 min
This week we explore the origin of the word “gerrymander” and dive into the debate about whether “data” is singular or plural (or both). FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest:…
603 - Words of the Year, Why You Shouldn’t Use ‘Eskimo,’ ‘Canon’ or ‘Cannon’?
Jan 11, 2018 • 15 min
This week I apologize for using the word "Eskimo," go through all the interesting 2017 words of the year, and give you a tip to remember the difference between "canon" and "cannon." SPONSOR: Visit http://audible.com/GG or text GG to 500-500 to start your…
602 - I’m Chuffed.
Jan 4, 2018 • 5 min
This week we talk about Janus words (or contronyms), which get their name from the same Roman god that gives us the name “January.” FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest:…
601 - ‘Based In’ or ‘Based Out Of.’ Omitting ‘That’
Dec 28, 2017 • 17 min
Based on, based off, based in, based out of…people are changing the way they use prepositions with "based." Also, people can get overzealous about deleting every "that" they can find in a sentence. Here's why you need it sometimes. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL…
600 - How to Pronounce ‘Caramel.’ Sports Idioms
Dec 21, 2017 • 11 min
Have you been pronouncing “caramel” wrong your whole life? Also, we discuss interesting sports idioms including “in the crosshairs,” “jump the gun,” and “slam dunk.” FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
599 - Delicious English Words (Chocolate, Guacamole) with Aztec Roots
Dec 14, 2017 • 10 min
Chocolate, guacamole, and more yummy words we get from Aztec languages. Also, why “lock, stock, and barrel” means “all of it” and what it has to do with Sir Walter Scott. Read the transcript at…
598 - Gifting and Regifting. Take a Decision.
Dec 8, 2017 • 11 min
Is “gifting” a word, and is regifting rude? Also, do you “take” a decision or “make” a decision? FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/realgrammargirl…
597 - Eskimo Words for Snow. Write a Book!
Nov 30, 2017 • 18 min
I bust the myth that Inuit have hundreds of words for snow, and I share an excerpt from Jack Gantos’ new book “Writing Radar” that will help you pledge to write a book. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
596 - Why Businesses Are Called Houses. Why We Call It “Black Friday.”
Nov 23, 2017 • 16 min
Today has been called “Black Friday” longer than you think, and there are other “black” days too! Also, have you ever wondered why some businesses are called “houses”? SPONSORS http://heifer.org/grammar http://texture.com/grammar FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL…
595 - ‘Side’ Words. What Is a Bailiwick?
Nov 16, 2017 • 12 min
While you’re planning your Thanksgiving side dishes, enjoy a segment about English “side” words. Plus, what is a bailiwick? FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest:…
594 - The Plural of ‘Batman.’ Why Smart People Struggle with Shakespeare Too.
Nov 9, 2017 • 18 min
I debate what the plural of “Batman” should be (it’s not straightforward!) and explore why the language of Shakespeare is hard to understand, even if you’re smart. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
593 - The Origin of English: Proto-Indo-European.
Nov 2, 2017 • 18 min
We explore the origin of English (and other languages) all the way back to the language known as Proto-Indo-European. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest:…
592 - “Sofa” or “Couch”? “Skeleton” Idioms.
Oct 26, 2017 • 14 min
This week, we talk about the difference between “sofa,” “couch,” and all the other words for that piece of furniture. Plus, to get in the mood for Halloween, we explore four idioms about skeletons. SPONSOR http://topcashback.com/grammar FOLLOW GRAMMAR…
591 - ‘Cannot’ or ‘Can Not’? ‘Dead’ Idioms.
Oct 19, 2017 • 14 min
This week, we talk about the difference between "cannot," "can not," "can't," and (horrors!) "cant." Plus, in honor of Halloween, we reveal the origin of three idioms about death. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
590 - How to Write an Apology
Oct 12, 2017 • 10 min
How to avoid the worst apologies (the “if” apology, the passive voice apology, the reverse apology, and the florid fauxpology) and write a good apology letter. THE GRAMMAR DAILY 2018 CALENDAR http://amzn.to/2f8jPDG GRAMMAR GIRL BOOKS…
589 - The “Ruth’s Chris” Apostrophe. Thingamajigs.
Oct 5, 2017 • 13 min
This week, I talk about what’s up with the weird apostrophe in “Ruth’s Chris Steak House” and where we get placeholder names like “thingamajig” and “doohickey.” FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
588 - Why People Mimic Accents. Why People “Have Your Six.”
Sep 28, 2017 • 13 min
This week, I talk about why we mimic accents, about how to pronounce “espresso,” about interesting idioms that include the number six. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest:…
587 - More British & American Differences. Quotation Marks with Periods and Commas
Sep 21, 2017 • 13 min
Quotation Marks with Periods and Commas FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/realgrammargirl Instagram: http://instagram.com/thegrammargirl LinkedIn:…
586 - UK and US English. ‘Bad’ or ‘Badly’?
Sep 14, 2017 • 17 min
Unusual differences I noticed between British and American English on a recent trip. Plus, why you should say you "feed bad" and not that you "feed badly." FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
585 GG. Rainy Idioms. “Because,” “Due To,” “Since,” and “As”
Sep 7, 2017 • 14 min
This week, we talk about rainy idioms and when to use “because” for “due to” and “since.” FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Snapchat: http://snapchat.com/add/thatgrammargirl Pinterest:…
584 GG. Pipe Dream. Comma Before a Quotation.
Aug 31, 2017 • 13 min
The woman who won more than $750 million in the Powerball lottery described it as a “pipe dream,” so we look at the origin of the term. Also, whether to use a comma to introduce a quotation is probably more complicated than you think. We have four rules…
583 GG Important or Importantly? Time Traveler Words
Aug 24, 2017 • 8 min
This week I tell you why you can ignore people who don’t like “more importantly,” and we talk about words that were new in 1555, 1967, 1977, and more. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl…
582 GG. How to Use Quotations. Stop Calling Yourself a Grammar Nazi
Aug 17, 2017 • 14 min
What do you call yourself? A grammar lover, grammar peever, stickler, grammar grouch, grammando, grammar Nazi? Sure, it’s all in fun, but it’s time to rethink that last one. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
581 GG. Riffle and Rifle. Worcestershire Sauce.
Aug 10, 2017 • 10 min
Worcestershire is pronounced nothing like it is spelled, and Gloucester and Leicester are the same way. We’ll talk about some linguistic phenomena that explain the drastic changes. Also, did you know there’s a different between riffling through something…
580 GG. Introductory Paragraphs. One of The…
Aug 3, 2017 • 15 min
Listeners sent in many more interesting phrases from obsolete technologies, and we also talk about how to write a great introductory paragraph and tricky sentence that include “one of the [plural nouns]”—which verb do you use? FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter:…
579 GG Language Games. Jerry-Built. And Female Juniors
Jul 27, 2017 • 9 min
We talked about “jury-rigged” a few months ago, and everybody wanted to know about “jerry-built,” so here you go! Also, we have lots of listener feedback about non-English language games that are like Pig Latin. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter:…
578 GG Words from Obsolete Technology
Jul 20, 2017 • 9 min
Some words survive long after the technology that made us use the words in the first place. Today, we look at words we get from typewriters, old telephones, and more. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
577 GG The Trump Jr. Punctuation Kerfuffle. Generation Names.
Jul 13, 2017 • 12 min
FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Snapchat: http://snapchat.com/add/thatgrammargirl Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/realgrammargirl Instagram: http://instagram.com/thegrammargirl…
576 GG Critique or Criticize? Games Like Pig Latin
Jul 6, 2017 • 12 min
Do you “critique” a novel or “criticize” it? People used to object to one of these two words. And you told me about Pig-Latin-type games in your languages, and I have the run down! This segment is just for fun. Or should that be unfay? Or fubun? Or…
575 GG Gestures. Elbow Grease. Capitalizing Directions.
Jun 29, 2017 • 16 min
Knowing when to capitalize a directional word such as “south” can be tricky. I have some guidelines. We also explain why we tell people to use “elbow grease” and review some research on gesturing that will blow your mind. Do you wonder why you talk with…
574 GG Commas with Transition Words. Double Whammy.
Jun 22, 2017 • 9 min
Have you ever wondered how to use a comma with ‘however’ (or if you even should)? We’ve got the scoop on using commas and semicolons with ‘however,’ ‘therefore,’ and other conjunctive adverbs and transition words. Also, you can trace ‘double whammy’ back…
573 GG Until, Till, and ‘Til. Dad Jokes.
Jun 15, 2017 • 14 min
You’ve heard them called “dad jokes,” but have you ever wondered why? We have a definition and also what we think is the perfect example of a dad joke. Also I’ll explain how “until” and “till” are completely separate words and why you should just straight…
572 GG Themself. Comma Splices.
Jun 8, 2017 • 14 min
You've finally accepted that it's OK to use the singular 'they'—sometimes—but now you have to decide whether to use 'themself' or 'themselves.' Don't worry, the new Chicago Manual of Style has you covered, and we talk about it today. Also, I've been…
571 GG Lego or Legos? Why English Spelling Reform Is Doomed.
Jun 1, 2017 • 26 min
If it bothered you last week that I called the toys Legos, you’ll like this week’s first topic: Lego or Legos? You’ll probably like it if you weren’t bothered too! Also, in honor of the Scripps National Spelling Bee, we talk about why English spelling…
570 GG Burned or Burnt? Why English Spelling Is a Mess.
May 25, 2017 • 14 min
Burned or Burnt? Why English Spelling Is a Mess. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Snapchat: http://snapchat.com/add/thatgrammargirl Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/realgrammargirl…
569 GG. Explain vs. Explanation. How to Outline.
May 18, 2017 • 12 min
If you’ve ever wondered why “explain” has an I but “explanation” doesn’t, we have the answer. Also, need help jumpstarting your writing process? Here’s why composing an outline is key. (Plus, could Grammar Girl be replaced by a robot?) FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL…
568 GG. In or Among. Weird Words.
May 11, 2017 • 11 min
This week we talk about why you might describe someone as “among bushes” instead of “in the bushes,” and we talk about how we get weird words like “gaga,” “flip-flop” and “dillydally.” FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
567 Is Pig Latin a Real Language?
May 4, 2017 • 14 min
This week we talk about the origin of the word “harbinger” (and I sing about swans) and whether Pig Latin qualifies as a language. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Snapchat:…
566 GG. Off Your Feed. Animal Language.
Apr 27, 2017 • 21 min
Off Your Feed. Animal Language.
565 GG. Apple, Podcasts, and Prepositions. Forensic Linguistics.
Apr 20, 2017 • 11 min
Apple, Podcasts, and Prepositions. Forensic Linguistics.
564 GG. Preposition or Adverb?
Apr 13, 2017 • 17 min
The weird complications about words such as “up” and “over” that make people fight about whether they are prepositions or adverbs. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Snapchat:…
563 GG Singular ‘They’
Apr 6, 2017 • 12 min
Singular 'They'
562 GG AP Style and Chicago Manual of Style Updates
Mar 30, 2017 • 15 min
AP Style and Chicago Manual of Style Updates FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Snapchat: http://snapchat.com/add/thatgrammargirl Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/realgrammargirl Instagram:…
561 GG $10 Million Comma. Ambiguous Sentences. Tribute to Bill Walsh
Mar 23, 2017 • 13 min
The $10 Million Comma. Ambiguous Sentences. A Tribute to Bill Walsh.
560 GG Devil’s Advocate. 3 Tips for Creating Sentences with Punch
Mar 16, 2017 • 12 min
This week we talk about why we call someone a “devil’s advocate” and why the rules of writing are the same for good lawyers and good thriller writers. FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl…
559 GG. Abbreviations. And Then the Murders Began. Runcible. Haiku.
Mar 9, 2017 • 11 min
This week, I have a Quick and Dirty Tip about how to define abbreviations that you use over and over in a document and a tidbit about a fun internet meme called #LaidlawsRule. And, to finish our little poetry kick over the last couple of weeks, I have a…
558 GG How to Write Good Survey Questions
Mar 2, 2017 • 14 min
How to avoid biasing your questions and annoying your respondents.
557 GG Double Dactyl Poetry
Feb 23, 2017 • 14 min
Write a double dactyl poem in honor of National Grammar Day. FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Double Dactyl Poetry: http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/node/9136 FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl…
556 GG Tumult. Bull in a China Shop. Always, Never, Usually, Often, Most, and More
Feb 16, 2017 • 10 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Tumult: http://bit.ly/2lSXWtI Absolutes: http://bit.ly/2kD6CTf DISCOVERY CHANNEL ‘BULL IN A CHINA SHOP’ VIDEO http://www.discovery.com/tv-shows/mythbusters/videos/bull-in-a-china-shop/ FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter:…
555 GG. Toe/Tow the Line. Pled or Pleaded. Animal Idioms.
Feb 9, 2017 • 12 min
This week we talk about “toeing the line,” “pled” versus “pleaded,” and animal idioms such as “There’s an eel under the rock.” FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Snapchat:…
554 GG ‘Reticent’ or ‘Reluctant.’ Which’ or ‘That.’
Feb 2, 2017 • 10 min
This week we talk about the difference between “reluctant” and “reticent” and when to use “which” or “that.” FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Snapchat:…
553 GG Not Only, But Also. Leave in the Lurch. Month Names.
Jan 26, 2017 • 12 min
This week we talk about a common error you should avoid when using "not only" with "but also." We examine why we talk about leaving someone "in the lurch." What's a lurch? And finally, we look at the interesting origins of the month names in English.…
551 Capital vs Capitol. Citing Podcasts and Websites
Jan 19, 2017 • 11 min
Are people in the capitol or capital this weekend? Also, why do citations even matter and what should you look for in a source? SPONSORS Download the Dunkin’ app and enroll in DD Perks with the code PODCAST to get a free Dunkin’ beverage.…
551 GG. Words of the Year. Writing Tips.
Jan 12, 2017 • 15 min
This week, we discuss the words of the year and four simple ways to write better in the new year. UPDATED AP STYLE INTERACTIVE WEB COURSE http://www.ragan.com/Z5AC03-MACMIL FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
550 GG Enormity or Enormousness? Badminton
Jan 5, 2017 • 7 min
This week we discuss whether there is really a difference between “enormity” and “enormousness” and about how badminton (not badmitten) got its name. UPDATED AP STYLE INTERACTIVE WEB COURSE http://www.ragan.com/Z5AC03-MACMIL FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter:…
549 GG Hone/Home In. Apostrophes.
Dec 29, 2016 • 11 min
A great memory trick to remember the difference between homing and honing (plus a complete aside about spiderwebs). Also, an solution to the mystery of why you sometimes see “farmers market” with and apostrophe and sometimes you see it without an…
548 GG. What Makes Good Stories.
Dec 22, 2016 • 10 min
What’s your favorite book and why? The questions are more than just a way to fill your online dating profile—they’re insights into how beloved stories push our psychological and neurological buttons. How does good writing grab you by the brain? My fellow…
547 GG ‘A While’ or ‘Awhile’? Writing Dialogue
Dec 15, 2016 • 11 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Writing Dialogue http://bit.ly/writing_dialogue ‘A While’ or ‘Awhile’? http://bit.ly/a-while UPDATED AP STYLE INTERACTIVE WEB COURSE http://www.ragan.com/Z5AC03-MACMIL FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl…
546 GG Anxious/Eager. If Not.
Dec 8, 2016 • 16 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Anxious or Eager? http://bit.ly/anxiouseager If Not: http://bit.ly/ifnot SPONSORS http://sockclub.com/grammar and the code “grammar” http://www.audible.com/gg UPDATED AP STYLE INTERACTIVE WEB COURSE…
545 GG Read the Riot Act. The Changing English Language.
Dec 1, 2016 • 14 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE English Is Flexible http://bit.ly/EnglishIsFlexible Read the Riot Act http://bit.ly/ReadTheRiotAct SPONSORS http://sockclub.com/grammar and the code "grammar" http://blurb.com/grammar and the code "grammar" UPDATED AP STYLE…
544 GG. Pilgrim Names. Pronouncing Foreign Words
Nov 24, 2016 • 21 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Pronouncing Foreign Words: http://bit.ly/2fiPCQf SPONSOR http://blurb.com/GRAMMAR and the promo code GRAMMAR for 25% off. http://sockclub.com and the promo code GRAMMAR for 15% off. UPDATED AP STYLE INTERACTIVE WEB COURSE…
543 GG. By the Wayside. How to Pronounce ‘Biopic’
Nov 17, 2016 • 11 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE By the Wayside http://bit.ly/2fNt0aq Pronouncing “Biopic” http://bit.ly/2fwymYl SPONSOR http://audible.com/gg UPDATED AP STYLE INTERACTIVE WEB COURSE http://www.ragan.com/Z5AC03-MACMIL FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter:…
542 GG. ‘Aloud’ or “Out Loud’? Strong Voice
Nov 10, 2016 • 9 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE ‘Aloud’ or ‘Out Loud’? http://bit.ly/aloud-out-loud Crafting a Strong Voice: http://bit.ly/strong-voice SPONSOR http://blueapron.com/grammar UPDATED AP STYLE INTERACTIVE WEB COURSE http://www.ragan.com/Z5AC03-MACMIL FOLLOW…
541 GG Before or Prior To? Foreign Language Syndrome
Nov 3, 2016 • 9 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE ‘Prior To’ or ‘Before’? http://bit.ly/prior-to Foreign Language Syndrome: http://bit.ly/foreign-language-syndrome SPONSOR http://Audible.com/gg UPDATED AP STYLE INTERACTIVE WEB COURSE http://www.ragan.com/Z5AC03-MACMIL FOLLOW…
540 GG. Cemetery or Graveyard? Peer Editing. To Calendar.
Oct 27, 2016 • 13 min
UPDATED AP STYLE INTERACTIVE WEB COURSE http://www.ragan.com/Z5AC03-MACMIL FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Snapchat: http://snapchat.com/add/thatgrammargirl Pinterest:…
539 GG Capitalizing Job Titles. I.e. Versus E.g. Sentence Diagramming
Oct 20, 2016 • 17 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Capitalizing Job Titles http://bit.ly/capitalize-titles I.e. Versus E.g. http://bit.ly/IE-EG Sentence Diagramming http://bit.ly/sentence-diagram SPONSORS http://modcloth.com code:grammar http://blueapron.com/grammar UPDATED AP…
538 Alumni. Words from Bookmaking. Beyond the Pale
Oct 13, 2016 • 17 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Alums or Alumni? http://bit.ly/alum-alumni Words from Bookmaking http://bit.ly/bookmaking-words Beyond the Pale http://bit.ly/beyond-the-pale SPONSORS http://modcloth.com code grammar http://audible.com/gg AMAZON AFFILIATE CODE…
537 GG “Further” Versus “Farther.” Horse’s Mouth
Oct 6, 2016 • 13 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE “Further” Versus “Farther” http://bit.ly/FurtherFarther Straight from the Horse’s Mouth http://bit.ly/HorsesMouth SPONSORS ModCloth http://modcloth.com Code: grammar Casper http://casper.com/gg Code: gg AMAZON AFFILIATE CODE…
536 GG Hit the Bestseller List: How to Style Your Words Like a Bestselling Author
Sep 29, 2016 • 15 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Canceled or Cancelled? http://bit.ly/cancelled-canceled Why Homecoming is HoCo: http://bit.ly/homecoming-hoco The Bestseller Code: Jodie Archer and Matthew Jockers, the authors of The Bestseller Code, give some quick tips on…
535 GG Anyways or Anyway? Topic Sentences
Sep 22, 2016 • 13 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Anyway or Anyways? http://bit.ly/AnywayAnyways How to Write a Good Topic Sentence: http://bit.ly/Topic-Sentence SPONSORS http://ag.co/grammar Use the code “grammar” at checkout for a discount. AMAZON AFFILIATE CODE…
534 GG. Bridget Jones. Pay Dirt. Dashes.
Sep 15, 2016 • 19 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Bridget Jones’s Baby: http://bit.ly/JonesPossessive Pay Dirt: http://bit.ly/PayDirtIdiom Dashes: http://bit.ly/HowToUseEmDash SPONSORS http://ag.co/grammar Use the code “grammar” at checkout for a discount.…
533 GG. Etc. Short Shrift. Prepositions
Sep 8, 2016 • 21 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE How to Pronounce ‘Etcetera’: http://bit.ly/pronounce-etc Short Shrift http://bit.ly/short-shrift Prepositions Aren’t Literal: http://bit.ly/not-literal SPONSORS http://ag.co/grammar Use the code “grammar” at checkout for a…
532 GG Loose or Lose. You Wazzock.
Sep 1, 2016 • 21 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE ‘Loose’ or ‘Lose’? http://bit.ly/LooseLose Origin of ‘Loose as a Goose’ http://bit.ly/LooseGoose You Wazzock! http://bit.ly/wazzock SPONSOR http://ag.co/grammar Use the code “grammar” at checkout for a discount. AMAZON…
531 GG Writing Dual POVs. Space Operas and Soap Operas.
Aug 25, 2016 • 12 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Writing Dual POVs: http://bit.ly/DualPOVs Soap Operas: http://bit.ly/Space-Opera SPONSORS http://magoosh.com Use the code “grammar” at checkout for 20% off. http://ag.co/grammar Use the code “grammar” at checkout for a…
530 GG Whom. Preorder. Badger, Weasel, Ferret.
Aug 18, 2016 • 14 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE “Who” Versus “Whom”: http://bit.ly/Who-Whom Preorder: http://bit.ly/CanISayPreorder Idioms of the Forest: http://bit.ly/BadgerWeaselFerret SPONSORS http://magoosh.com Use the code “grammar” at checkout for 20% off.…
529 GG Latin Words. Batten Down the Hatches
Aug 11, 2016 • 11 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Words from Latin: http://bit.ly/words-with-latin-origins Batten Down the Hatches: http://bit.ly/batten-down SPONSORS http://magoosh.com Use the code “grammar” at checkout for 20% off. http://igloosoftware.com/grammargirl AMAZON…
528 GG Adjectives. Logical Fallacies
Aug 4, 2016 • 13 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE 5 Types of Fallacies: http://bit.ly/2agt9oQ Order of Adjectives: http://bit.ly/2at4U1U SPONSORS: http://magoosh.com Use the code “grammar” at checkout for 20% off. http://audible.com/gg AMAZON AFFILIATE CODE…
527 GG ‘Lit’ or ‘Lighted.’ Why Some Words Become Homophones
Jul 28, 2016 • 17 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE ‘LIT’ OR ‘LIGHTED’? http://bit.ly/LitOrLighted ALVEOLAR FLAPPING: http://bit.ly/AmericanHomophones SPONSORS: http://magoosh.com Use the code “grammar” at checkout for 20% off. http://weebly.com/grammar AMAZON AFFILIATE CODE…
526 GG Types of Third Person Point of View. Flammable and Inflammable
Jul 21, 2016 • 10 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE WHY DOES “INFLAMMABLE” MEAN “FLAMMABLE”? When we’re describing something that burns easily, we say it’s flammable, but “inflammable” means the same thing and was the original word, so why do we have both?…
525 GG Food Idioms. ‘Affective’ or ‘Effective’
Jul 14, 2016 • 14 min
Why do we say ‘Take it with a grain of salt’ and other food idioms? Is it ‘affective’ or ‘effective’? FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE: http://bit.ly/affective-effective http://bit.ly/food-idioms SPONSORS: http://magoosh.com Use the code “grammar” at checkout…
524 GG. Affect Versus Effect. How to Pronounce The
Jul 7, 2016 • 15 min
HOW TO PRONOUNCE “THE”: Did you know there are two ways to pronounce “the,” and the rule that governs which pronunciation you choose is kind of like how you choose between “a” and “an”? “AFFECT” VERSUS “EFFECT”: I get asked whether to use “affect” or…
523 GG Sightseeing. On Accident Versus by Accident
Jun 30, 2016 • 12 min
SIGHTSEEING: A listener asked, “Why is it sightseeing and not siteseeing? Aren’t you seeing sites? Sightseeing sounds redundant.” Interesting question! ON ACCIDENT or BY ACCIDENT: A listener asked, “What is the deal with the term on accident? I’ve always…
522 GG Hearty or Hardy? How English Became English. Jury-Rigged.
Jun 23, 2016 • 19 min
HEARTY OR HARDY? A listener named Cheryl left a comment on the Grammar Girl Facebook page asking me to write about the difference between hearty and hardy. She wrote, “I am a writer and get confused on the usage of the two adjectives. Love your podcast…
521 GG Is Funnest a Word? How to Pronounce Adirondack.
Jun 16, 2016 • 12 min
HOW TO PRONOUNCE ADIRONDACK: Apparently, I’ve been mispronouncing “Adirondack” my whole life, and thanks to the listeners who let me know. WRITING FOR AUDIO: A listener named Tim wrote that he heard someone on NPR say that another person “often…
520 GG Band Names. Woman or Female?
Jun 9, 2016 • 8 min
BAND NAMES: When referring to a rock band, do I use the single form “is” or “are”? Does the band name dictate the usage? WOMAN OR FEMALE? The question of word choice is rising again—Is Hilary Clinton the first “female” presidential nominee from a major…
519 GG RBIs. Principal and Principle. Run of the Mill
Jun 2, 2016 • 14 min
HOW TO MAKE RBI PLURAL: Baseball season has started, so it’s a good time to answer questions from listeners who have asked how to make an abbreviation such as “RBI” plural. PRINCIPAL OR PRINCIPLE? Today we’re going to recall that the principal is indeed…
518 GG Are You Interurban? Vonnegut’s Famous Semicolon Quotation Was Taken Out of Context. Off the Cuff.
May 26, 2016 • 14 min
ARE YOU INTERURBAN? When you split your time between the East Coast and the West Coast, you can call yourself “bicoastal.” What about when you’re splitting your time between two cities, like a listener named Jeff, who splits his time between New York City…
517 GG Why Do We Call It Commencement? When to Delete “It”
May 19, 2016 • 10 min
COMMENCEMENT: Last week a professor in my department asked me why we call a graduation ceremony “commencement” when the event marks the end of college. “To commence” means “to begin,” not end, so it seems like an odd name for the ceremony. DELETE ‘IT’:…
516 GG Celsius Versus Centigrade. ‘Between’ Versus ‘Among’
May 12, 2016 • 10 min
Celsius Versus Centigrade: Anders Celsius was a Swedish astronomer who invented a thermometer based on the boiling point and freezing point of water. We know a slightly improved version of his thermometer by the Celsius name and by the word “centigrade.”…
515 GG Home vs. Away? How to Make Product Names Plural
May 5, 2016 • 11 min
Away Versus Home? A listener named Alan wrote, “When using the word versus, does it make a difference as to what is placed before and what is placed after? For example: Roe versus Wade or Red Sox versus Yankees. In other words, by rule is one the…
514 GG Brouhaha. New Words. One Fell Swoop.
Apr 28, 2016 • 12 min
Last week, ESPN fired Curt Schilling because of offensive remarks he made on social media, and in his follow-up statement, Schilling referred to the brouhaha, but he misspelled the word as brew ha ha, like the name of a beerfest in my hometown. (Follow…
513 GG North or Northbound. Subjunctive Verbs.
Apr 21, 2016 • 9 min
Carrie from New Orleans asked me to help her understand whether she should say “I wish I were more perceptive” or “I wish I was more perceptive.” It’s a great question because it’s something that a lot of people don’t know. (Follow along on the website:…
512 GG Titled or Entitled? AP Style Updates. Into Thin Air.
Apr 14, 2016 • 11 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Titled or Entitled? http://j.mp/titled-entitled AP Style Updates http://j.mp/APstyle2016 Into Thin Air http://j.mp/into-thin-air SPONSORS http://IglooSoftware.com/grammargirl http://casper.com//gg and use the code GG AMAZON…
511 GG Pronouncing Pulitzer. Navajo Codes in WWII
Apr 7, 2016 • 14 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Pronouncing Pulitzer: http://j.mp/227C9M1 Navajo Codes: http://j.mp/1S3FXIA SPONSORS http://verbling.com (Discount Code: grammargirl) http://audible.com/gg AMAZON AFFILIATE CODE http://quickanddirtytips.com/amazon E-BOOK:…
510 GG How Aphasia Causes Difficulty Speaking
Mar 31, 2016 • 23 min
Follow along on the website: Aphasia: http://j.mp/1qcnPWF SPONSORS http://verbling.com Promo code: grammargirl AMAZON AFFILIATE LINK http://quickanddirtytips.com/amazon FOLLOW GRAMMAR GIRL Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook:…
509 GG Charlie Chaplin Grammar. S-Backing.
Mar 24, 2016 • 14 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE Charlie Chaplin Grammar: http://j.mp/22qGqfA S-Backing: http://j.mp/1nT2mR5 SPONSORS http://verbling.com Promo code: grammargirl http://lifelock.com Promo code: grammar AMAZON AFFILIATE LINK http://quickanddirtytips.com/amazon…
508 GG. Haiku Winners. Great Story Ideas
Mar 17, 2016 • 21 min
FOLLOW ALONG ON THE WEBSITE National Grammar Day Haiku Winners: http://j.mp/1Uk71t5 14 Tips for Coming Up with Freelance Story Ideas You Can Sell: http://j.mp/1Uk7746 “The Essential Guide to Freelance Writing” by Zachary Petit WINNERS INFO…
507 Patty or Paddy? Needs Washed
Mar 10, 2016 • 11 min
Follow along on the website: ‘Patty’ Versus ‘Paddy’ http://j.mp/1U4uezm ‘Needs Washed’ http://j.mp/1QF9QS2 Find Grammar Girl on social media Twitter: http://twitter.com/grammargirl Facebook: http://facebook.com/grammargirl Snapchat:…
506 GG Subordinate Clause Examples
Mar 3, 2016 • 10 min
“Subordinate clause” is the name you’re more likely to have learned in school, but the other name, “dependent clause,” may help you better understand what they do because adding that subordinating conjunction to the head of the clause makes it dependent…
505 GG Maudlin. Vocabulary Words
Feb 25, 2016 • 9 min
Follow along on the website: Maudlin: http://j.mp/1LdS5K8 Vocabulary Words: http://j.mp/20W9uc9 See all of Grammar Girl’s books: http://j.mp/allGGbooks Amazon Affiliate Link: http://quickanddirtytips.com/amazon
504 GG Shined or Shone? Idioms About Tea
Feb 18, 2016 • 10 min
Follow along on the website: Shined or Shone? http://j.mp/1WuMUGd Idioms About Tea http://j.mp/1PURxpj Sponsor: http://casper.com/gg Amazon Affiliate Link: http://quickanddirtytips.com/amazon
503 GG What Is a Canard?
Feb 11, 2016 • 11 min
Follow along on the website: What Is a Canard? http://j.mp/23YcgBZ What’s the Origin of ‘Straw Man’? Sponsor: http://audible.com/gg Amazon Affiliate Link: http://quickanddirtytips.com/amazon
502 GG. Straw Man. Wicked.
Feb 4, 2016 • 17 min
Follow along on the website: What Is a Straw Man Argument? http://j.mp/1T0UtGo Why Do We Pronounce the ‘-ed’ in ‘Wicked’? http://j.mp/1K1lg2H Sponsor: http://IglooSoftware.com/grammargirl Amazon Affiliate Link: http://quickanddirtytips.com/amazon Share…
501 GG Word Families. Caucus
Jan 28, 2016 • 9 min
Follow along on the website: Word Families http://j.mp/1PkoXk9 What Is a Caucus? http://j.mp/23v6TKx Sponsor http://feverbornbook.com Amazon Affiliate Link http://quickanddirtytips.com/amazon
500 GG Redundancy. Letters of Recommendation.
Jan 21, 2016 • 15 min
Follow along on the website: Redundancy:http://j.mp/1PGcT99 Letters of Recommendation: http://j.mp/20fJRVo Sponsors: http://audible.com/gg http://feverbornbook.com Wow! It's episode 500. Thanks to everyone. Tell me your story about how you listen. Leave…
499 GG Current or Currant? Singular They
Jan 14, 2016 • 12 min
Follow along on the website: Current or Currant? http://j.mp/22WDk4j Singular They http://j.mp/1UL2gFO Sponsor http://igloosoftware.com/grammargirl Amazon Affiliate Link: http://quickanddirtytips.com/amazon
498 GG A Joke About a Mongoose. Writing Dates.
Jan 7, 2016 • 9 min
Follow along on the website: Mongoose Joke: http://j.mp/1RmNGqh Writing Dates: http://j.mp/1OSwvWV Sponsor: http://audible.com/gg When you shop at Amazon, start at our affiliate link to support the show: http://quickanddirtytips.com/amazon
497 GG Should You Capitalize ‘the Force’ from Star Wars?
Dec 31, 2015 • 3 min
Should You Capitalize ‘the Force’ from Star Wars?
496 GG Plural of Hippopotamus
Dec 24, 2015 • 2 min
Follow along on the website: http://j.mp/1O78HCs Support the show by using our Amazon affiliate link: http://quickanddirtytips.com/amazon Grammar Pop iOS game: http://j.mp/1H5YiSj
495 GG Pair. Misusing “So” and “Very.” Even Keel
Dec 17, 2015 • 11 min
Follow along with the articles on the website: http://j.mp/QDTgrammar Recommended book: The Grammar Devotional Sponsors: http://mackweldon.com (20% off with the promo code “grammar”) http://thirdlove.com/grammar (30 day free trial)
494 GG Pair. Forensic Linguistics. In Cold Blood
Dec 10, 2015 • 10 min
Follow along on the website: http://j.mp/QDTgrammar Pair Forensic Linguistics In Cold Blood Sponsor: http://thirdlove.com/grammar Sponsor: http://SockFancy.com Use the code “grammar” for $10 off. Quick And Dirty Tips Amazon Affiliate Link. Start your…
493 GG Hoofs or Hooves? Color Phrases
Dec 3, 2015 • 13 min
Follow along on the website: Hoofs or Hooves? http://j.mp/1lyLAFV Color Phrases: http://j.mp/1NszDMS Sponsor: http://audiblepodcast.com/GG Recommended Book: The Red Queen’s Run Support the show when you shop at Amazon: http://quickanddirtytips.com/Amazon…
492. GG. Blue. Kith and Kin
Nov 27, 2015 • 14 min
This week, we look at 10 different meanings of the word “blue,” including two that are the opposite of each other, and we learn what “kith” means in “kith and kin.” Happy Thanksgiving. Follow along on the website: 10 Meanings of ‘Blue’:…
491 GG Social Media. Internal Dialogue.
Nov 19, 2015 • 6 min
Follow along on the website: Social Media: http://j.mp/1l4zbcE Internal Dialogue: http://j.mp/1YfSzBY Sponsor: http://thirdlove.com/grammar AP Style Interactive Course: http://bit.ly/GrammarGirlAPStyle
490 GG Formatting URLs in Text
Nov 12, 2015 • 9 min
Follow along on the website: How to Format URLs: http://j.mp/1HIBW8x
489 GG Dialogue Tags. Writing Fight Scenes. NaNoWriMo
Nov 5, 2015 • 14 min
Follow along on the website: Dialogue Tags: http://j.mp/1Q4HqCm Dialog or Dialogue? http://j.mp/1MbksDL Writing Fight Scenes: http://j.mp/1Mgc4pR Sponsor: http://AudiblePodcast.com/GG Amazon Affiliate Link: http://quickanddirtytips.com/Amazon
488 GG Hallowe’en. Apostrophes. The Garden Path
Oct 29, 2015 • 14 min
Follow along on the website: Hallowe’en: http://j.mp/1k7T8yM Apostrophes: http://j.mp/1Ms9wH7 Garden Path: http://j.mp/1PTv9zH Sponsor: EverAlbum.com/grammargirl Amazon Affiliate Link: http://quickanddirtytips.com/amazon AP Style Webinar:…
487 GG Wolf or Woof. Interrobang. Riding Roughshod
Oct 22, 2015 • 12 min
Follow along on the website: Wolf or Woof: http://j.mp/1PFqnFX Interrobang: http://j.mp/1OQWQrY Riding Roughshod: http://j.mp/1jzyQOO EverAlbum http://everalbum.com/grammargirl Amazon Affiliate Link: http://quickanddirtytips.com/amazon Open Room Media…
486 - Suffragette. Ginormous
Oct 15, 2015 • 12 min
Follow along on the website: Suffragette: http://bit.ly/1jruUj6 Ginormous: http://bit.ly/1R1M5SG Amazon Shopping Link: http://quickanddirtytips.com/amazon
485 GG Firstly. Exclamation Points. Leeway.
Oct 8, 2015 • 13 min
Follow along on the website: First or Firstly? http://bit.ly/1MgTPMZ Exclamation Points: http://bit.ly/1GyzcKj Leeway: http://bit.ly/1VHTZaw http://QuickAndDirtyTips.com/amazon
484 GG Mantel or Mantle? Bulleted Lists
Oct 1, 2015 • 9 min
Follow along on the website: ‘Mantel’ or ‘Mantle’? http://bit.ly/1L5bN8A How to Format a Bulleted List: http://bit.ly/1j1P2bz Amazon Affiliate Link: http://quickanddirtytips.com/offers
483 GG Sort, Kind, or Type? Homophones, Homographs, and Homonyms
Sep 24, 2015 • 6 min
Follow along on the website: Sort, Kind, or Type? http://bit.ly/1Fvq3a9 Homophones, Homographs, and Homonyms: http://bit.ly/1YCzN98 Amazon Affiliate Link: http://quickanddirtytips.com/offers
482 GG Amused or Bemused. Being Bilingual. Positive Anymore.
Sep 17, 2015 • 19 min
Follow along on the website: ‘Amused’ or ‘Bemused’? http://bit.ly/1KT1NkH Bilingual: http://bit.ly/1Ko9Lf2 Positive ‘Anymore’: http://bit.ly/1W4tWHe http://quickanddirtytips.com/offers
481 GG And/Or. That Should Be a Word.
Sep 10, 2015 • 7 min
Follow along on the website: And/Or: http://bit.ly/1JT153a That Should Be a Word: http://bit.ly/1f59xlb Start your Amazon shopping from our link and help support the show: http://QuickAndDirtyTips.com/offers
480 GG Matriculate. Diminutives. Crocodile or Alligator?
Sep 3, 2015 • 15 min
Follow along on the website: Matriculate: http://bit.ly/1oPSBkJ Diminutives: http://bit.ly/1Qaatld Crocodile or Alligator? http://bit.ly/1KsTHPu Sponsors: http://quickanddirtytips.com/offers http://audible.com/GG
479 GG Scrabble in Different Parts of the World
Aug 27, 2015 • 14 min
Scrabble in Different Parts of the World
478 GG Why English Has Silent Letters
Aug 20, 2015 • 20 min
Follow along on the website: Fictitious Versus Fictional: http://bit.ly/1Nmnr0A Silent Letters: http://bit.ly/1hqOjQl Adult, Adolescent, Adultery: http://bit.ly/1KwPAvM Sponsor: http://edx.org/gg
477 GG Scrabble Extravaganza
Aug 13, 2015 • 17 min
Follow along on the website: Scrabble Expert Interviews: http://bit.ly/1MqVrZF
476 GG Zero Percent, Prefixes and Suffixes, Malapropisms
Aug 6, 2015 • 16 min
Follow along on the website: Zero Percent http://bit.ly/1Mnyu8v Prefixes and Suffixes http://bit.ly/1ejOkD3 Malapropisms: http://bit.ly/1eT5tDU Thanks to Audible for supporting our podcast. For a special summer promotion to encourage reluctant readers to…
281 How Do Words Get in the Dictionary?
Jul 31, 2015 • 8 min
Follow along on the website: How Do Words Get in the Dictionary? http://j.mp/1IHGSKr
475 GG How a Comma Can Get You out of a Parking Ticket
Jul 23, 2015 • 15 min
Follow along on the website: Numbers in Parentheses: http://bit.ly/1GGZDfs Comma Law: http://bit.ly/1CW2mqj Minions: http://bit.ly/1TSiDB4 QDT Block Party: http://apple.co/1gA1pKr Sponsor: http://edx.org/gg
474 GG Flesh Out. Last Names. Hat Trick.
Jul 16, 2015 • 16 min
Follow along on the website: Flesh Out or Flush Out? http://j.mp/1TDrE0x Last Names: http://j.mp/1V57cHH Hat Trick: http://j.mp/1Mv2j4O Help the show by taking our short survey: http://podsurvey.com/grammar Grammar Girl on Pinterest:…
473 GG How Understanding Toy Story Can Help You Get into College
Jul 9, 2015 • 14 min
Follow along on the website: Ban Together or Band Together? http://j.mp/1JTe7xl How Understanding ‘Toy Story’ Can Help Get You into College. http://j.mp/1S7L4Ik Left Holding the Bag. http://j.mp/1gmXhNG Sponsor: http://AudiblePodcast.com/GG
472 GG Citizen or Resident? Let’s and Let Us. Newfangled.
Jun 23, 2015 • 17 min
Follow along on the website: Citizen or Resident? http://j.mp/1BBaE67 Let’s and Let Us: http://j.mp/1SL2NaP Newfangled: http://j.mp/1NbEVcJ Survey: http://podsurvey.com/grammar Sponsor: http://DiscountFilters.com/GG
471 GG Size versus Sized. When Is It OK to Be Redundant? Mind Your P’s and Q’s.
Jun 18, 2015 • 13 min
Follow Along on the Website: ‘King-size’ or ‘King-sized’? http://bit.ly/1AN2M1x When Is It OK to Be Redundant? http://bit.ly/1eRM9rl What Does “Mind Your P’s and Q’s Mean”? http://bit.ly/1AN1qUh Grammar Pop: j.mp/1H5YiSj]
470 GG Prepositions in Shakespeare
Jun 12, 2015 • 14 min
Follow Along on the Website: How Many Spaces After a Colon? http://bit.ly/1EFJVQF Prepositions in Shakespeare http://bit.ly/1Rwb7KU A Treat http://bit.ly/1AAwmqw
469 GG Kudos. Crossword Puzzles. Squad Goals. June 4, 2015.
Jun 4, 2015 • 14 min
Follow Along on the Website: The Meaning of Kudos http://bit.ly/1SEAko0 What Does ‘Squad Goals’ Mean? http://bit.ly/1JhBqmC Crosswords http://bit.ly/1d23nAV
468 GG Congratulations. Food Names That Come From Countries…or Not. Tall Poppy Syndrome.
May 28, 2015 • 11 min
Follow Along on the Website: Congratulations http://bit.ly/1HM9mVo Food Names that are Totally Fake http://bit.ly/1HM9ww0 Tall Poppy Syndrome http://bit.ly/1KAcYxc Sponsor: http://AudiblePodcast.com/GG
467 GG Deep Seeded or Deep Seated?, Lewis Carroll: He Loved to Play with Language, Japanese Words in English
May 21, 2015 • 17 min
Follow along on the website: Deep Seeded or Deep Seated? http://bit.ly/1IRDyQj Lewis Carroll: He Loved to Play with Language http://bit.ly/1GsAh9S Japanese Words in English http://bit.ly/1F06qAl
466 GG Healthy Versus Healthful. The Best SAT Essay Ever. Fast and Loose
May 14, 2015 • 20 min
Follow along on the website: Healthy Versus Healthful http://bit.ly/1Hem0wb The Best SAT Essay Ever Article: http://bit.ly/1H4dr4c PDF of the Essay: http://j.mp/1cVMKHV Fast and Loose http://bit.ly/1A1704R
465 GG Two Spaces After a Period?
May 7, 2015 • 14 min
Follow Along on the Website: Yay, Yea, Yeah, and Yes. Two Spaces After a Period? http://bit.ly/1IlSO7G English Words from Spanish Grammar Pop iPad http://apple.co/1GRVVA6 Grammar Pop Universal http://apple.co/1Kn9gmZ Sponsor: http://AudiblePodcast.com/GG…
464 GG Weird Conditionals
Apr 30, 2015 • 13 min
Follow along on the website: Fiance or Fiancee: http://j.mp/1HI4wcy If-Clauses: http://j.mp/1DA19Qe Dark Horse: http://j.mp/1Othuk5 Sponsors: http://thegreatcourses.com/grammar http://mprofs.com/grammargirl (code GRAMMARGIRL)
463 GG Most or Almost. Parallel Structure. Follow Suit
Apr 23, 2015 • 13 min
Follow along on the website: Most or Almost http://j.mp/1bz6joG Parallel Structure http://j.mp/1EwygtV Follow Suit http://j.mp/1yUH2PL Try my iOS game, Grammar Pop http://j.mp/1H5YiSj Sponsor: The Great Courses http://thegreatcourses.com/grammar
462 GG Everyday. Ain’t. Eponyms
Apr 16, 2015 • 12 min
Follow Along on the Website: Everyday Versus Every Day http://j.mp/1FvEiFz Ain’t http://j.mp/1cjF1CP Eponyms http://j.mp/1EjPhGa Try my iOS game, Grammar Pop http://j.mp/1H5YiSj
461 GG Between You and Me: Confessions of a Comma Queen
Apr 9, 2015 • 10 min
Follow along on the website: Smitten http://j.mp/1aLWFyC Between You and Me (Excerpt) http://j.mp/1H6eg0b Spick and Span http://j.mp/1a7LdMr Try my iOS game, Grammar Pop http://j.mp/1H5YiSj
105 Yoda Grammar (Reissue)
Apr 2, 2015 • 5 min
Follow along on the website: Yoda Grammar http://j.mp/1P06VCE
460 GG Global English: Prepone, Do the Needful, and More
Mar 26, 2015 • 11 min
Follow along on the website: Parentheses and Subject-Verb Agreement http://j.mp/1FWMySM Global English http://j.mp/19U43aG Stand in Line or Stand on Line? http://j.mp/1bxpONX Try our iOS game, Grammar Pop http://j.mp/1H5YiSj
459 GG Subject-Verb Agreement
Mar 19, 2015 • 11 min
Follow Along on the Website: ‘Wrong’ Versus ‘Wrongly’ http://j.mp/1xjQN9H Subject-Verb Agreement http://j.mp/1xClTnM Is ‘Heighth’ a Word? http://j.mp/1GvnEIq Vote in the Podcast Awards http://j.mp/1G4ixy8
458 GG Can You Process These Tricky, but Grammatical, Sentences?
Mar 13, 2015 • 15 min
Follow along on the website: Does E-Book Need a Hyphen? http://j.mp/1wCjVs6 Can You Process These Tricky, but Grammatical, Sentences? http://j.mp/1HPgFLq The Meaning of Minions http://j.mp/1Gy6wBx Please Vote in the Podcast Awards http://j.mp/1G4ixy8
457 GG If Versus Whether
Mar 5, 2015 • 11 min
Follow along on the website: Homely Versus Homey http://j.mp/1B9kcD3 If Versus Whether http://j.mp/1wZkOWx At Bay http://j.mp/1BMTwIP Vote for Grammar Girl for Best Education Podcast http://j.mp/1G4ixy8 Grammar Pop Sale http://j.mp/1H5YiSj
456 GG Is Starting a Sentence With So Condescending?
Feb 26, 2015 • 16 min
Follow Along on the Website When “First” Is Redundant http://j.mp/1wtjhgT Is Starting a Sentence With So Condescending? http://j.mp/1wthqsn Synecdoche http://j.mp/1FAUDua Watch Grammar Girl’s TEDx Talk http://j.mp/ggTEDx
Announcement
Feb 19, 2015 • 0 min
There was a death in my family, so I don’t have a show this week. I’ll be back next week. If you’re looking for something new to listen to while I’m away, try one of the other Quick and Dirty Tips podcasts. Some of them are listed here:…
455 GG Why Do We Drive on Parkways and Park on Driveways?
Feb 12, 2015 • 12 min
Follow along on the website: Dreamed or Dreamt? http://j.mp/1E2oQBF Parkway, Driveway, and Dooryard http://j.mp/1zNdcei Buffalo Buffalo Buffalo http://j.mp/1EbYdtP Watch my TEDx talk: Who Votes for New Words? http://j.mp/ggTEDx
454 GG Splitting Infinitives
Feb 5, 2015 • 13 min
Capitalizing Theories. Splitting Infinitives. Samuel Johnson.
453 GG Less Versus Fewer
Jan 29, 2015 • 14 min
Follow along on the website: Capitalizing Time Periods http://j.mp/1z4W6bX Less Versus Fewer http://j.mp/1yP50d4 Bee’s Knees http://j.mp/1DiC0dw —— Try my iOS game, Grammar Pop http://j.mp/1H5YiSj
452 GG Why People Misuse Prepositions
Jan 22, 2015 • 20 min
Follow along on the website: Compliment Versus Complement http://j.mp/184vjlA Saving Our Prepositions http://j.mp/1yOHBdJ How 8 Fonts Got Their Names http://j.mp/1xZXLdg Try my iOS game, Grammar Pop http://j.mp/1H5YiSj
451 GG Impossible Participals
Jan 15, 2015 • 15 min
Follow along on the website. Commas Before “Jr.” http://j.mp/1BYaNOx Impossible Participles http://j.mp/1u2BXCZ Onomatopoeia http://j.mp/1AXQQZa Try my iOS game, Grammar Pop http://j.mp/1H5YiSj
450 GG Is Sign Language Universal?
Jan 8, 2015 • 34 min
Tons of fascinating tidbits about sign language from interpreter David Peach Follow along online: http://j.mp/1EQ3dsJ Find David online: http://twitter.com/dpeach http://learnsigns.com Sponsor: http://AudiblePodcast.com/GG Try my iOS game, Grammar Pop:…
449 GG Double Possessives
Jan 1, 2015 • 12 min
Follow along on the website: Transitive Versus Intransitive Verbs http://j.mp/1AUkNaZ Double Possessives http://j.mp/1x8OVy2 Try my iOS game, Grammar Pop http://j.mp/1H5YiSj
448 GG How Our Brains Process Hyperbole
Dec 25, 2014 • 13 min
Follow along on the website: Champ Versus Chomp http://j.mp/1Cp9TsZ Hyperbole http://j.mp/1HkXt6c Adulting http://j.mp/1sNOALZ
447 GG Weird Ideas About Paragraph Length
Dec 18, 2014 • 17 min
Read along on the website: Why Some Disease Names Are Capitalized http://j.mp/16x24qJ How Long Should a Paragraph Be? http://j.mp/13hHVD5 Johannes Gutenberg http://j.mp/1r4cjMs SPONSOR LINKS http://AudiblePodcast.com/GG http://Audible.com/legion
446 GG Why Don’t People Say “Thou” Anymore
Dec 11, 2014 • 12 min
Read along on the website: What Does “Xmas” Really Mean? http://bit.ly/1xkSUsL Why Don’t People Say “Thou” Anymore? http://bit.ly/1sv4joy Who Says “Kitty-Corner” and Who Says “Catty-Corner” http://bit.ly/1yTXXkt Grammar Girl books make a great gift!…
445 GG Why Do People Say “Like” All the Time?
Dec 4, 2014 • 16 min
Read along on the website” Is “Boughten” a Word? http://j.mp/1tUEecu Did Valley Girls Invent “Like”? http://j.mp/12CCHlG Is German Chocolate Cake from Germany? http://j.mp/1w4pyyW Learn More About my December 12 Writing Webcast http://bitly.com/ggwebcast
444 GG Between You and Me
Nov 27, 2014 • 12 min
Read along on the website: Lightning versus Lightening http://bit.ly/121kVb0 Between You and Me http://bit.ly/1AnHpif How Teddy Bears Got Their Name http://bit.ly/1AnH8fc Sign up for my December 12 corporate webcast. http://bitly.com/ggwebcast
443 GG Done Versus Finished
Nov 20, 2014 • 12 min
Done Versus Finished (Follow along at the website: http://bit.ly/1uNZgyH) Types of Nouns (http://bit.ly/1vwzG3c) Why Grimm’s Fairy Tales Should Make You Think of Linguistics (http://bit.ly/1yzfHOs) Try my iOS game, Grammar Pop: http://bit.ly/14eeMDb
442 GG Make Me a Sandwich
Nov 13, 2014 • 13 min
Based on Versus Based off. Make Me a Sandwich: A Joke About Verbs. How to Pronounce Zero
441 GG Mic or Mike? Simple or Simplistic? Uppercase and Lowercase
Nov 6, 2014 • 13 min
Mic or Mike? Simple or Simplistic? Uppercase and Lowercase. Visit the website: http://bit.ly/1qEiW2m
440 GG How to Plan a Novel
Oct 30, 2014 • 14 min
For NaNoWriMo: How to format a character’s thoughts, how to plan a novel, and the surprising newness of the novel format. Visit the website: http://bit.ly/13DNlJ8
439 GG Texting, Coffins, and Death
Oct 23, 2014 • 13 min
Today, with Halloween in mind, I have a Quick and Dirty tip about the difference between a casket and a coffin; and an excerpt from David Crystal’s new book, Words in Time and Place, that goes through the many words we have for death and dying. Finally, I…
438 GG Why Do People Say Punctuation Out Loud?
Oct 16, 2014 • 23 min
“Vaccine” Versus “Vaccination.” Syelle Graves explains why people say things such as “We never leave any soldier behind. Period,” and more generally, the relationship between speech and writing. A doozy of an eighteenth-century grammar rule: Don’t use…
437 GG What’s the difference between England, Great Britain, and the UK?
Oct 9, 2014 • 7 min
I know all you European listeners think it’s ridiculous that Americans don’t know the difference between England and Britain, but a British friend told me that many of you don’t know the difference between Britain and the United Kingdom, and that this…
436 GG Why People Have Always Been Confused About Apostrophes
Oct 2, 2014 • 15 min
An interview with Ammon Shea about the confusing history of apostrophes. Hanged Versus Hung. The story of the Victorian Great Exhibition, where Adolphe Sax displayed his invention: the saxophone. Read the transcript: http://bit.ly/Zsa0po
435 GG We Might Could Harvest the Corn
Sep 25, 2014 • 16 min
Yes, you can start a sentence with “because.” Here’s how to do it. What are helping verbs (also called auxiliary verbs), and why do people in some regions say things such as “might could” and “might should”? English writers didn’t always use a dot over…
434 GG Ya Shank: The Made-Up Swear Words of ‘The Maze Runner’
Sep 18, 2014 • 11 min
Insults, swear words, and world-building for young adults: In an interview with James Dashner, I got the inside scoop on the language of “The Maze Runner.” Read the transcript: http://bit.ly/1poctaV
433 GG Why People Mix Up the Pronouns “Me” and “I”
Sep 11, 2014 • 14 min
I can tell you which pronouns to use, but it takes a linguist to explain WHY people get confused. Here, Gretchen McCulloch reveals the fascinating reason that people struggle with sentences such as “Billy and me went to the store.” Read the transcript:…
432 GG When to Use a Comma Before ‘Because’
Sep 4, 2014 • 27 min
A tip about when you need a comma before the word “because,” an interview with Peter Sokolowski from Merriam-Webster about the philosophies behind dictionary definitions, and a tidbit the phrase éminence grise. Read the transcript: http://bit.ly/1yxWmkA
431 GG Words That Aren’t Words
Aug 28, 2014 • 13 min
In this podcast, you get a Quick and Dirty Tip about where to put periods and commas relative to quotation marks, an excerpt from Ammon Shea’s book “Bad English,” and a tidbit about a 1921 poem called “Alphabet of Errors.” Read the transcript:…
430 GG The Plural of Money. This Is Your Brain on Writing. Egregious
Aug 21, 2014 • 15 min
In this week’s podcast, Grammar Girl discusses the plural of money, how to use “egregious,” and talks with Ellen Hendriksen from The Savvy Psychologist podcast about the findings from an experiment done by German researchers in Germany who studied…
429 GG How to Use the Conjunction “Nor”
Aug 14, 2014 • 18 min
How do you use the conjunction “nor” and why is it so special it deserves a podcast of its own? Neil Whitman explains. Visit the website to read the full transcript: http://bit.ly/1oOCyOR
428 GG Crash Blossoms
Aug 7, 2014 • 13 min
Why the Associated Press accidentally made people think another Malaysian airplane had crashed, and what it tells us about language. Visit the website to read the full transcript: http://bit.ly/1rs4BXJ
427 GG 7 French Food-Related Words That Became English
Jul 31, 2014 • 15 min
When the Normans took over England in 1066, they brought their food and their language. We talk about seven interesting French words that made it into English, and guest Clever Cookstr shares some of her favorite related recipes. Read the full transcript:…
426 GG A Language Lover’s Trip to England
Jul 24, 2014 • 13 min
During a short but delightful trip to England, I saw the Rosetta Stone, the White Tower at the Tower of London, ancient alphabet tiles and wax seals, a stained glass window honoring William Caxton, and many more wonders. Hear about them all. Read the…
425 GG Why Weird Al’s Word Crimes Video Made Me Want to Quit
Jul 17, 2014 • 9 min
Why Weird Al’s Word Crimes Video Made Me Want to Quit. Visit the website to watch the video and comment: http://bit.ly/1qArtIJ
424GG There’s Something Weird About “For,” “Yet,” and “So”
Jul 10, 2014 • 10 min
FANBOYS are a myth and there’s something weird about “for,” “yet,” and “so.”
423 GG Is the Semicolon in TL;DR Ironic?
Jul 3, 2014 • 3 min
“TL;DR” means “too long; didn’t read,” but the semicolon is usually associated with long or complex sentences. What is it doing in this abbreviation? Note: This piece originally appeared as a Grammar Girl blog post January 22, 2014 and was rereleased as…
422GG Manipulating Words to Make Things Funny
Jun 26, 2014 • 7 min
Why sentences like this are funny: A woman gives birth in the UK every 48 seconds. She must be exhausted.
421 - Part II: Why Do People Say ‘A-Whole-Nother’?
Jun 19, 2014 • 12 min
Why do people say "a-whole-nother"?It's the same reason we say "an apron" instead if "a napron."
420 - Why ‘A-Whole-Nother’ Isn’t Like ‘Ala-Frickin’-Bama’ and ‘Hizzouse’
Jun 12, 2014 • 9 min
While researching why people say "a-whole-nother," Syelle Graves discovered that even knowing what to call the phrase gets complicated (and interesting).
419 - Using Stick Figures to Understand First, Second, and Third Person
Jun 5, 2014 • 6 min
Using Stick Figures to Understand First, Second, and Third Person
418GG Starting a Sentence with a Conjunction: Right or Wrong?
May 29, 2014 • 10 min
Many people have been taught that it's wrong to start a sentence with a conjunction, but nearly all major style guides say doing so is fine. Neal Whitman investigates why there seems to be such a difference between what teachers say and what style guides…
417 - An Unparalleled Letdown
May 22, 2014 • 3 min
The authors of "The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation" help us understand parallel structure.
416GG How to Kick Your Annoying Preposition Habit
May 15, 2014 • 7 min
How to Kick Your Annoying Preposition Habit
415 - Commas Are Like People on the Subway
May 8, 2014 • 8 min
Commas are like people on the subway: You think you know them, but they're awfully complex. This week, we'll dig deeper and get to know some of their jobs: separating items in a series (the Oxford comma), delineating appositives, and surrounding…
414 - Luisa Zissman’s Missing Apostrophe
May 1, 2014 • 9 min
Sometimes companies leave apostrophes out of their names when it seems as if the name would need an apostrophe. Why do they do it, and is it wrong?
413 - Words Invented by Shakespeare
Apr 24, 2014 • 7 min
In honor of Shakespeare's 450th birthday, we'll look at Shakespeare's words, phrases, insults, and false friends. I bet you don't know them all.
412 - Can I Help Who’s Next?
Apr 17, 2014 • 8 min
Neal Whitman addresses some annoying phrases you hear in stores and restaurants, such as "Can I help who's next?" and "Did you want cream in your coffee?" Find out why people say such things.
411 - Addictive Versus Addicting
Apr 10, 2014 • 7 min
Addictive Versus Addicting
410GG Just Because
Mar 30, 2014 • 9 min
It’s tricky to pick apart the grammar of a sentence such as “Just because you’re correct doesn’t mean you’re not annoying.” Guest writer Neal Whitman explains why such sentences work and what they really mean.
408 - Why We Don’t End Sentences With “You’re”
Mar 20, 2014 • 8 min
Some words have strong forms, weak forms, and even weaker forms.
407GG Why Canadians Don’t Really Say “Aboot”
Mar 13, 2014 • 9 min
Gretchen McCulloch from the All Things Linguistic explains why Canadians don't say "aboot" and why most Americans think they do.
406GG Begging the Question
Mar 6, 2014 • 7 min
Language is changing but that doesn’t mean you have to go with the flow.
405 - Is Cash Money a Regional Expression?
Feb 27, 2014 • 7 min
Is Cash Money a Regional Expression?
404 - Why “Substitute” Is Weird
Feb 27, 2014 • 9 min
Why it’s hard to talk about substituting one thing for another without confusing people. Guest Writer: Neal Whitman Sponsor: AudiblePodcast.com/GG
403 - Preventative and Orientate
Feb 22, 2014 • 5 min
Today, we’re going to talk about two cases in which English has two words that mean the same thing and whether one choice is better than the other. Preventative and preventive, and orient and orientate. Sponsor: Grammar Girl’s Peeve Wars. Visits…
402 - Little Bunny Foo Foo
Feb 21, 2014 • 10 min
The Hoax Behind Little Bunny Foo Foo
401 - How Clipping Creates New Words
Feb 13, 2014 • 6 min
Great tales of English word evolution: From pantaloons to pants, caravan to van, and much more. Guest Writer: Bonnie Trenga Sponsor: http://FundAnything.com/peevewars