houston we have a problem. this is a national emergency. were up in space and we can see the earth. it appears that florida is shaped like a gun. evacuate the state immediately
If you rape someone, it doesn’t matter that you’re only 16.
If you rape someone, it doesn’t matter that you cry like a child in court.
If you rape someone, it doesn’t matter that you had a promising future.
if you rape someone, it doesn’t matter that your life is destroyed.
If you rape someone, it should haunt you for the rest of your life.
You raped someone.
You deserve every ounce of justice we can place upon you in court of law.
Benjamin Dreyer is the VP Executive Managing Editor & Copy Chief of Random House Publishing Group. Below is his list of the common stumbling blocks for authors, from A to X.
- One buys antiques in an antiques store from an antiques dealer; an antique store is a very old store.
- He stayed awhile; he stayed for a while.
- Besides is other than; beside is next to.
- The singular of biceps is biceps; the singular of triceps is triceps. There’s no such thing as a bicep; there’s no such thing as a tricep.
- A blond man, a blond woman; he’s a blond, she’s a blonde.
- A capital is a city (or a letter, or part of a column); a capitol is a building.
- Something centres on something else, not around it.
- If you’re talking about a thrilling plot point, the word is climactic; if you’re discussing the weather, the word is climatic.
- A cornet is an instrument; a coronet is a crown.
- One emigrates from a place; one immigrates to a place.
- The word is enmity, not emnity.
- One goes to work every day, or nearly, but eating lunch is an everyday occurrence.
- A flair is a talent; a flare is an emergency signal.
- A flier is someone who flies planes; a flyer is a piece of paper.
- Flower bed, not flowerbed.
- Free rein, not free reign.
- To garner is to accumulate, as a waiter garners tips; to garnish (in the non-parsley meaning) is to take away, as the government garnishes one’s wages; a garnishee is a person served with a garnishment; to garnishee is also to serve with a garnishment (that is, it’s a synonym for “to garnish”).
- A gel is a jelly; it’s also a transparent sheet used in stage lighting. When Jell-O sets, or when one’s master plan takes final form, it either jells or gels (though I think the former is preferable).
- Bears are grizzly; crimes are grisly. Cheap meat, of course, is gristly.
- Coats go on hangers; planes go in hangars.
- One’s sweetheart is “hon,” not “hun,” unless one’s sweetheart is Attila (not, by the way, Atilla) or perhaps Winnie-the-Pooh (note hyphens).
- One insures cars; one ensures success; one assures people.
- Lawn mower, not lawnmower.
- The past tense of lead is led, not lead.
- One loathes someone else but is loath to admit one’s distaste.
- If you’re leeching, you’re either bleeding a patient with a leech or otherwise sucking someone’s or something’s lifeblood. If you’re leaching, you’re removing one substance from another by means of a percolating liquid (I have virtually no idea what that means; I trust that you do).
- You wear a mantle; your fireplace has a mantel.
- Masseurs are men; masseuses are women. Many otherwise extremely well educated people don’t seem to know this; I have no idea why. (These days they’re all called massage therapists anyway.)
- The short version of microphone is still, so far as RH is concerned, mike. Not, ick, “mic.” [2009 update: I seem to be losing this battle. Badly. 2010 update: I’ve lost. Follow the author’s lead.]
- There’s no such word as moreso.
- Mucus is a noun; mucous is an adjective.
- Nerve-racking, not -wracking; racked with guilt, not wracked with guilt.
- One buys a newspaper at a newsstand, not a newstand.
- An ordinance is a law; ordnance is ammo.
- Palette has to do with colour; palate has to do with taste; a pallet is, among other things, something you sleep on. Eugene Pallette was a character actor; he’s particularly good in the 1943 film Heaven Can Wait.
- Noun wise, a premier is a diplomat; a premiere is something one attends. “Premier” is also, of course, an adjective denoting quality.
- That which the English call paraffin (as in “paraffin stove”), we Americans call kerosene. Copy editors should keep an eye open for this in mss. by British authors and query it. The term paraffin should generally be reserved for the waxy, oily stuff we associate with candles.
- Prophecy is a noun; prophesy is a verb.
- Per Web 11, it’s restroom.
- The Sibyl is a seeress; Sybil is Basil Fawlty’s wife.
- Please don’t mix somewhat and something into one murky modifier. A thing is somewhat rare, or it’s something of a rarity.
- A tick bites; a tic is a twitch.
- Tortuous is twisty, circuitous, or tricky; torturous is painful, or painfully slow.
- Transsexual, not transexual.
- Troops are military; troupes are theatrical.
- A vice is depraved; a vise squeezes.
- Vocal cords; strikes a chord.
- A smart aleck is a wise guy; a mobster is a wiseguy.
- X ray is a noun; X-ray is a verb or adjective.
I legitimately did not know a few of these, English language obsessive that I am. So useful!
The English language though.
Blonde/blond always trips me up. So does vice/vise and a couple of others. Good list!
Everytime I come across this post I my blood pressure goes past. Here’s the reason why. With lengthy notes and links to dictionaries.
A blond man, a blond woman; he’s a blond, she’s a blonde - This doesn’t make a lick sense. If you (Benjamin Dreyer) hate “blonde” so much, just stop using it altogether. In “she’s a blonde [woman]”, ‘blonde’ is an adjective. In “a blond woman”, ‘blond’ is an adjective. Why is one ‘blonde’ and the other ‘blond’, when both describe a woman? Either just stick to ‘blond’ at all times or use ‘blonde’ right (i.e., pertaining to women with pale hair). This, by the way, also pertains to ‘brunet/te’.
Something centres on something else, not around it - The Merriam-Webster dictionary makes the argument for me: “The intransitive verb center is most commonly used with the prepositions in, on, at, and around. […] Center around, a standard idiom, has often been objected to as illogical. The logic on which the objections are based is irrelevant, since center around is an idiom and idioms have their own logic. Center on is currently more common in edited prose, and revolve around and similar verbs are available if you want to avoid center around.” [source link]
One’s sweetheart is “hon,” not “hun,” unless one’s sweetheart is Attila - Either way it’s a term of endearments and it might denote a difference in pronunciation, like some dialects differentiate between “mum” and “mom”. Also, by the way, if you refer to Attila as “hun”, make sure to capitalise it. It’s a proper name, after all.
Lawn mower, not lawnmower - Dictionary seems to agree with it, but I’d like to point out that it’s the exact same construct as ‘dishwasher’.
X ray is a noun; X-ray is a verb or adjective - How the fuck can “X-ray” be an adjective. How do you even make it an adjective. It’s as much of an adjective as “stone” is in the phrase “stone wall”. Regarding the hyphen, Wikipedia (citing the Oxford English Dictionary) begs to differ: “Correct spelling of X-ray(s) in the English language includes the variants x-ray(s) and X ray(s).” Feel free to use what you want, writers!
life is tough when you’re a lazy perfectionist who simultaneously doesn’t give a shit about anything but at the same time cares too much about everything u feel
lmao i swear japan has the greatest game shows
WAS THAT PLUNGER WORTH IT
DID SHE DIE I DONT UNDERSTAND OH MY GOD
remember, these are in your face right now
that’s so fucking mental omg
This always disturbs me but I always reblog. While touching my face where my teeth apparently are.
imagine if they were upside down
then we’d be vampires!
Two kinds of people
How to college:
- drink coffee
Raggedy Man, I remember you!
“There’s only us, there’s only this. Forget regret, or life is yours to miss. No other road, no other way. No day but today.”
Sweet mother of Jesus let this song never end.
Cheesus fuck that was amazing
WHAT A PLEASANT SURPRISE OH MY GOD
This is the best thing ever. Just hit play. You need to.
I will never escape this song in my lifetime. Oh my God…that was amazing.
At 3 seconds I almost pressed stop.
Then I heard the lyrics. Oh god the lyrics.
omg this is perfect
THIS IS SO MUCH BETTER THAN I EXPECTED
I CANNOT BE THE ONLY ONE WHO IS SCREAMING SO FUCKING LOUD RIGHT NOW.
I was like “ok this is kinda cool but why are people so excited-OHMYGODDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD
OOC: FOREVER REBLOG.