This post should go under the category "Things I Should Have Known." It's about hyphenation. Did you know that in Microsoft Word you can insert an optional hyphen? You are probably wondering why you would want to. Example: Imagine you are writing a two-column piece such as a newsletter article....
Hello, Reader, People have been asking a good question about commas with names and salutations, so here goes: Question: Do I have to use a comma with a person's name when I say "Hi" or "Hello"? For example: Hi, Maria.    Hello, Nigel,   Good morning, Kendra.Answer: Yes, you need to...
Yesterday I led a brown-bag lunch session, Email Intelligence, for a very intelligent group in Seattle. They came up with eight new rules of email etiquette to add to my standard list. Click here to download that list. The group offered these excellent suggestions: Create an automatic reply to...
Yesterday I got a friendly telephone call from a stranger: Collette Gillian of Salt Lake City, Utah, USA. Being a copywriter and a lover of the English language, Collette likes to see English written correctly.  Collette phoned to inform us that a page on our website said we have...
How many spaces should be included after end punctuation such as a period (full stop), exclamation point, and question mark? One. It's true. Believe me. Despite what your teachers taught and typewriters required in decades past, the number of spaces after end punctuation--and after a colon--is one. Wanting to be...
As we rapidly generate documents and email, we rely more and more on Microsoft's grammar and spelling checker. But you may not be getting as much as you could from that tool. For example: Does your grammar checker catch passive-verb sentences, such as "The meter should be read"? The active-verb form...