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Writing Tips: 121 - 130

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Tip  #121:  Capitalize abbreviations if the words they stand for
would be capitalized. 
     For example:
        UCLA (University of California at Los Angeles)
p. (page)

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For this week's exercise, rewrite the following words with the proper
capitalization:

1.  x-ray, 2..vitamin b, 3.  t-square, 4.  u-turn, 5.  I-beam

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Here is last week's exercise: What's wrong with the following use of
question marks?

1. "When are we going to receive a raise in salary?."
2. You told me--Didn't you--that Harry had been chosen?
3. The group leader asked if anyone had a question?

Here are the answers:

1. "When are we going to receive a raise in salary?"
2. You told me that Harry had been chosen.  Didn't you?
3. The group leader asked if anyone had a question.





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Tip #122:  Here are a few Do's and Don'ts about prepositions:

1. Do not use redundant prepositions, such as  "off of," "in
   back of," "inside of," and "at about."
  
   Change:  The client arrived at about 4:00 p.m.
       To:  The client arrived at 4:00 p.m.

2. Do not omit necessary prepositions.

   Change:  He was oblivious and not distracted by the view
            from his office window.
       To:  He was oblivious to and not distracted by the
            view from his office window.

3. If a preposition falls naturally at the end of a
   sentence, leave it there.

   Example:  I don't remember which file I put it in.

4. When a preposition appears in a title, it is
   capitalized only if it is the first word in the title
   or if it has four letters or more.

   Example:  Composition for the Technical World was
             reviewed recently by the IEEE Journal.

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Rewrite the following sentences by either eliminating or adding
prepositions:

1. She just could not start in to do her paperwork.
2. Let's divide up the orange.
3. When did they finally get down to the problem?
4. Mr. Lee gained his reputation by hard work and honest
   dealings with his customers.

*********************************************************

Here is last week's exercise: rewrite the following words with the
proper capitalization:

1.  x-ray, 2..vitamin b, 3.  t-square, 4.  u-turn, 5.  I-beam

Answers: 
1. X-ray, 2. Vitamin B , 3. T-square, 4.  U-turn, 5. I-beam





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Tip # 123:  When a sentence contains grammatical forms inconsistent
with one another a mixed construction occurs.  These constructions
can shift the tense, person, number and voice.

   Change:  The pilot lowered the landing gear and is
            approaching the runway.  
   To:  The pilot lowered the landing gear and approached
        the runway.
   (Notice the shift from past to present tense).

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Please rewrite the following sentences by correcting the mixed
construction:

1. The technician should take care in choosing your
   equipment. (Notice the shift in person).
2. My car, though not as fast as the others, operate
   on regular gasoline. (Notice the shift in number).
3. I will check your report, and then it will be
   returned to you. (Notice the shift in voice).

*********************************************************

Here is last week's exercise:

Rewrite the following sentences by either eliminating or adding
prepositions:
1. She just could not start in to do her paperwork.
2. Let's divide up the orange.
3. When did they finally get down to the problem?
4. Mr. Lee gained his reputation by hard work and honest
   dealings with his customers.

Answers:
1. She just could not start her paperwork.
2. Let's divide the orange.
3. When did they finally get to the problem?
4. Mr. Lee gained his reputation by hard work and by
   honest dealings with his customers.




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Tip # 124:   When using clip art in your business publications, use a
large illustration rather than numerous, small illustrations placed
randomly on the page.  However, you can use several individual, but
related, clip art images grouped together for an effective message.

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Eliminate the unnecessary words in the following sentences:

1. There are a large number of applications that involve
   checking the uncertain data.
2. The larger educational institutions were located in
   places like New York, Boston, Los Angeles, and Chicago.
3. The United States government is not supplying much in
   the way of guidance concerning ecological environments.

*********************************************************

Here is last week's exercise:

Please rewrite the following sentences by correcting the mixed
construction:

1. The technician should take care in choosing your
   equipment. (Notice the shift in person).
2. My car, though not as fast as the others, operate on
   regular gasoline. (Notice the shift in number).
3. I will check your report, and then it will be returned
   to you. (Notice the shift in voice).

Answers:

1. The technician should take care in choosing his or her
   equipment.
2. My car, though not as fast as the others, operates on
   regular gasoline.
3. I will check your report, and then return it to you.




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Tip #125:  I received a good question from one of our subscribers: 

Question:  How should email salutations such as
           "Hi Gloria" be punctuated? 
           Hi, Gloria, or
           Hi Gloria, or
           ??

Email salutations should be punctuated:  Hi,Gloria.  However, you
would not use a comma when using Dear Gloria. 

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Please correct the following pronoun errors:

1. My boss is her.
2. In his letter, John mentioned you and I.
3. They and us must discuss the terms of the merger.
4. Two systems analysts, Joe and me, were selected.
5. Between you and I, he is wrong.

*********************************************************

This was last week's exercise:

Eliminate the unnecessary words in the following sentences:

1. There are a large number of applications that involve
   checking the uncertain data.
2. The larger educational institutions were located in
   places like New York, Boston, Los Angeles, and Chicago.
3. The United States government is not supplying much in
   the way of guidance concerning ecological environments.

The answers are:

1. A large number of applications involve checking the
   uncertain data.
2. The larger educational institutions were located in
   New York, Boston, Los Angeles, and Chicago.
3. The United States government is not supplying much
   guidance in ecological environments.



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Tip # 126:  The purpose of writing a proposal is to fill a need.  
Therefore, your readers will evaluate your plan according to how well
your written presentation answers their questions about what you are
proposing to do, how you plan to do it, when you plan to do it, and
how much it is going to cost.

1. Tell why you are the best organization for the job.

2. Tell what major steps you will take to meet their
   needs (a schedule for completing the task).

3. Provide the qualifications of everyone who will be
   involved.

4. Break the costs down including information about
   equipment, material, personnel requirements.

5. Proofread.  Your document must be perfect.

6. Use professional fonts such as Arial or Times Roman
   with a 12 pt. size.

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Please insert commas wherever necessary.

1. However I am willing to reconsider.

2. Whenever I practice the piano my brother closes the
   windows.

3. The computer which I bought last week is in the garage.

4. She attended a conference in London England last week.

5. They said they would do the job.

*********************************************************

Here is last week's exercise:

Please correct the following pronoun errors:

1. My boss is her.
2. In his letter, John mentioned you and I.
3. They and us must discuss the terms of the merger.
4. Two systems analysts, Joe and me, were selected.
5. Between you and I, he is wrong.

Here are the answers:

1. My boss is she.
2. In his letter, John mentioned you and me.
3. They and we must discuss the terms of the merger.
4. Two systems analysts, Joe and I, were selected.
5. Between you and me, he is wrong.





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For tip #127, visit http://www.basic-learning.com

Tip # 128:  Use abbreviations and acronyms if you are certain your
reader understands them.  In general, use abbreviations only in
charts, tables, graphs, footnotes, bibliographies, and other places
where space is at a premium.  Also, do not place an additional period
at the end of a sentence that ends with an abbreviation.

Example:  The National Aeronautics and Space Administration
          (NASA) has helped our country develop many new
          products.  NASA has also developed an orbiting
          space laboratory.

Example:  The official name of the company is Basic Learning
          Systems, Inc.

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Remove any unnecessary commas in the following sentences:

1. John said that, the company's failure is another's
   opportunity.

2. The engineering department's director, and the
   quality-control sector's supervisor were both opposed
   to the schedule.

3. The meeting was adjourned, but, the members continued
   to debate.

4. We are ordering new products, such as, computers,
   scanners, and printers.

*********************************************************

Here is last week's exercise:
Please insert semicolons wherever necessary:

1. Ask not what your country can do for you ask what
   you can do for your country.
2. I used to call him my "web master" it made him laugh.
3. The weather was cold for that time of year (I was
   shivering wherever I went) nevertheless, we set out
   to hike.
4. In September a bag of potatoes cost $.79 in December
   $.99 in February $1.10.  I wonder if this inflation
   will stop.

Here are the answers:
1. Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what
   you can do for your country.
2. I used to call him my "web master"; it made him laugh.
3. The weather was cold for that time of year (I was
   shivering wherever I went); nevertheless, we set out
   to hike.
4. In September a bag of potatoes cost $.79; in December
   $.99; in February $1.10.  I wonder if this inflation
   will stop.




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Tip # 129:  Since there is a direct correlation between paragraph
length and comprehension, try to keep your paragraphs about no more
than 14 lines (or one-quarter of a page).  Long paragraphs,
especially in emails, cause comprehension to decrease.

*********************************************************

Correct the errors in capitalization in the following:

1. Move toward the Northeastern part of the region
   during the Summer.
2. The fifties were an interesting Period.
3. Five Company Officials have resigned from our
   Organization.
4. One of the greatest Inventions is the Aspirin.
5. Region 9 marketing division is located in the south.

*********************************************************

Here is last week's exercise:

Remove any unnecessary commas in the following sentences:

1. John said that, the company's failure is another's
   opportunity.
2. The engineering department's director, and the
   quality-control sector's supervisor were both opposed
   to the schedule.
3. The meeting was adjourned, but, the members continued
   to debate.
4. We are ordering new products, such as, computers,
   scanners, and printers.

Here are the correct answers:

5. John said that the company's failure is another's
   opportunity.
6. The engineering department's director and the
   quality-control sector's supervisor were both opposed
   to the schedule.
7. The meeting was adjourned, but the members continued
   to debate.
8. We are ordering new products, such as computers,
   scanners, and printers.




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Tip # 130: Can you explain the difference between affect and effect, with
examples of each being applied?"  

Here is the explanation:

Affect is usually used as a verb meaning "to influence,
change, assume." 

  For example: 
  The court's decision will not affect the legal precedent.

In psychology, affect is used as a noun to mean "feeling, emotion." 

  For example: 
  We need to analyze the affects (emotions) produced by
  the conflict. 

Effect can be either a verb meaning "to bring about" or a noun
meaning "result, impression."

  For example:
  We must effect (bring about) an immediate improvement. 
  The effect (result) of the computer is enormous.

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Try these sentences.  Place either the word "affect" or "effect" in
the sentence:

1. Sally's suggestion did not _____the decision.
2. The _____ of the new medicine is excellent.
3. She _______ an unsophisticated manner.
4. It was months before the full ______ took place.

*********************************************************

Here is the last practice exercise:
Correct the errors in capitalization in the following:

1. Move toward the Northeastern part of the region during
   the Summer.
2. The fifties were an interesting Period.
3. Five Company Officials have resigned from our
   Organization.
4. One of the greatest Inventions is the Aspirin.
5. Region 9 marketing division is located in the south.

Here are the answers:

1. Move toward the northeastern part of the region during
   summer.
2. The fifties were an interesting period.
3. Five company officials have resigned from our
   organization.
4. One of the greatest inventions is the aspirin.
5. Region 9 Marketing Division is located in the South.





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