Just imagine how spending a few minutes to receive one writing tip a week could add up to improve your business writing, which adds up in saving you and your company time and money. That’s at least 12 writing tips each quarter and 52 tips over the course of a year. Plus, you’ll have access to an archive of nearly 500 writing tips and growing. Best of all, these online communications hints are absolutely free. Take a look at the sample writing tips below and sign up to receive your weekly tips through Yahoo Groups.

List of The Writing Tips

Tip #1 Choose clear, familiar words.

Tip #1: Choose clear, familiar words. You’ll stand tall in your reader’s eyes if you replace long words with shorter ones. For example:

Long wordShorter word
facilitateease or help
Long phraseShorter word
at the present timenow
at your earliest conveniencesoon
be in a position tocan
in accordance withas
due to the fact thatbecause
in the amount offor
under the circumstancestherefore
in the event thatif
in reference toabout
in view of the fact thatbecause
in order thatso
noted in our recordednoted
pending receipt ofawaiting
under date ofon

Tip #2 Put more action into your sentences by using active voice rather than passive voice verbs.
Tip #3 Six ways to start a sales letter.
Tip #4 Avoid sexist language in business writing.
Tip #5 Plan before you write.
Tip #6 Five tips for writing more effective business letters.
Tip #7 Win Approval with Proposals.
Tip #8 Use a seven-point writing plan.
Tip #9 Put people in your writing.
Tip #10 Preposition Pointers and Word Confusion.
Tip #11 Add power to your writing by using shorter verbs.
Tip #12 Use the comma correctly.
Tip #13 Sometimes it is o.k. to end a sentence with a preposition.

If a sentence sounds too stuffy, a preposition at the end can make it sound less formal. 

Many interesting anecdotes have been told about the late Sir Winston Churchill.  The following is an amusing story that involves using a preposition to end a sentence. 

It seems that Sir Winston had just given an important speech before the assembled members of Parliament.  One young listener who had recently been elected to that august body turned to an older member and said, “I am losing my respect for Sir Winston as a grammarian.  Did you notice he ended two sentences with prepositions?” 

A few days later, in a relaxed conversation, the older gentlemen told Sir Winston what their young colleague had said.  Churchill thought for a moment on the subject of prepositionals and then said, “You tell our confused young friend that his criticism is the kind of nonsense up with which I shall not put.” 

Tip #14 A helpful method to follow in proofreading a document is to divide your task into several parts.
Tip #15 Avoid wordiness.
Tip #16 Keep a journal.
Tip #17 Avoid sexist language in your writing.
Tip #18 Eliminate sluggish passive-voice expressions.
Tip #19 Accent the positive.
Tip #20 When you prepare a resume, keep the following things in mind.
Tip #21 Hyphenate the elements of a compound adjective that occurs before a noun.
Tip #22 I have been asked if it is acceptable to end a sentence with a preposition.
Tip #23 Word Usage Tips:
Tip #24 Note-taking Principles.
Tip #25 Make subjects and verbs agree.
Tip #26 Use parallel construction.

Parallel ideas should be expressed in the same grammatical form.  Choose whichever form you like, but stick to it.

Incorrect use of parallel construction:

We are interested in hearing your ideas on motivating employees, how to introduce change, and quality control techniques.Rewrite:

We are interested in hearing your ideas on motivating employees, introducing change, and controlling quality.Rewrite:

We are interested in how to motivate employees, introduce change, and control quality.

Tip #27 Here are some general rules for the use of the hyphen.
Tip #28 Writing well is a skill.
Tip #29 Be sure to edit your writing.
Tip #30 Be assertive in your writing.
Tip #31 A helpful method to follow in proofreading a document is to divide your task into several parts:
Tip #32 Organize your writing.
Tip #33 Make your subjects and verbs agree.
Tip #34 Be careful of nonmotivating phrases, and don’t overdo humility.
Tip #35 Ask yourself questions before putting your problems in writing.
Tip #36 When writing a resume, base what information you are going to include on the following questions.
Tip #37 Bad business forms are bad for your business.
Tip #38 Use flush left and ragged right margins in your writing layout.
Tip #39 Someone asked me, “What is a ‘Plain English’ document?”
Tip #40 Ten Resume Writing Tips for Technical Positions.
Tip #41 Avoid wordiness, even in your simple phrases.
Tip #42 Eliminate unclear jargon or buzzwords from your sentences.
Tip #43 Watch how you use words in your writing.
Tip #44 Practice being specific and use terms your reader can picture when you are describing someone or something.
Tip #45 Do not use sexist language in business writing.
Tip #46 When writing copy, always focus on the reader.
Tip #47 Good document design should provide visual stimulation.
Tip #48 Be forthright and assertive in business writing.
Tip #49 Link your nouns and verbs.
Tip #50 Proofread with and without your computer.
Tip #51 Here are some tips for writing in the Information Age.
Tip #52 When to use hyphens.

This tip was prompted by a question from Barb Willis.  She wanted to know when to use hyphens.  Since there are many uses, I will start with two uses:

  1. Hyphenate the elements of a compound adjective that occurs before the noun.  The reason for this is the words that make up the compound adjective are not in their normal order.

Example: “ high-tech equipment “ actually means equipment  “that reflects a high level of technology.”

  1. Hyphenate compound adjectives that express a single thought.

Example: “a fast-track career” means “ a career moving on a fast track.”
Other examples are “on-the-job training,” a “$30,000.00 -a-year job.”

Please correct the following sentences and e-mail them to me:

  1. Attached is a listing of competencies that display a self-analysis of our staff.
  2. Attached is two versions of a template for developing courses.

The feature article that appeared in the Ft. Lauderdale Sun Sentinel last month has been published in a number of other newspapers, such as the Washington Post, etc.  Thanks to all of you who e-mailed me with this information.  Thanks also to those who have purchased my Bull’s Eye Business Writing workbook.

Tip #53 Vary sentence pattern and length.
Tip #54 Business writing is journalistic style writing.
Tip #55 Be specific and use terms your reader can picture.
Tip #56 Make sure your verbs and pronouns agree with their subjects.
Tip #57 Keep your sentences short and simple.
Tip #58 some rules and practices for acronyms:
Tip #59 Avoid “run-on sentences.”
Tip #60 Be sensitive to the small differences in word meanings.
Tip #61 Position your ideas for emphasis.
Tip #62 Watch for verbs and pronouns that don’t agree with their subjects.
Tip #63 Be careful with the use of words such as ‘but’ because it’s easy to be misunderstood when writing.
Tip #64 The apostrophe has two main functions to perform, and they’re both straightforward.
Tip #65 Try exercises in which we must use our word skills.
Tip #66 Since the only tools we have in writing are the words we use and our vocabulary skills, we should try exercises in which we must use our word skills.
Tip #67 This week addresses some special rules for when and when not to use capitalization in company titles.
Tip #68 Your choice and arrangement of words are ways to emphasize your ideas.
Tip #69 The objective of the resume cover letter is to present a brief overview of yourself to the employer.
Tip #70 I want to direct this week’s tip to the use of numbers and apostrophes.
Tip #71 Some of the common errors you’re likely to encounter with words.
Tip #72 So here are some additional common word errors for you to notice, which I got from searching the internet.
Tip #73 Here are some tips for breaking down writer’s block.
Tip #74 Here are some suggestions for adding pizzazz to your writing.
Tip #75 Here are 5 rules for the use of prepositions.
Tip #76 The following are a few tips on writing numbers.
Tip #77 Spell words consistently.
Tip #78 Before getting started to write your business document, see if you can answer the following questions.
Tip #79 Use coordinating conjunctions such as and, but, or, nor, yet, for, so to join complete sentences, clauses, and phrases that are short and choppy.
Tip #80 Try turning a complete sentence into a prepositional phrase (a phrase beginning with a preposition) to make your writing more concise.
Tip #81 When formatting your emails.
Tip #82 Here are some rules concerning the use of the hyphen.
Tip #83 If the pronoun who, that, or which appears as the subject in the middle of the sentence, you need to decide whether to follow it with a singular or plural verb.
Tip #84 When writing a resume, draw attention to the personal responsibilities and supervisory aspects of the job, rather than just list specific duties.
Tip #85 Here are a few spelling rules to remember.
Tip #86 The form or the mood of a verb indicates something about the action.
Tip #87 Use transitional words and phrases.
Tip #88 A good report summary should provide the following information
Tip #89 In proofreading for disruptive commas
Tip #90 Writing Numbers.
Tip #91 Be aware of misused and abused language.
Tip #92 Tips for writing sales letters:
Tip #93 When writing a proposal
Tip #94 To be politically correct, avoid feminine suffixes
Tip #95 Tell them what you’re going to say, say it, then tell them what you said.
Tip #96 Make your writing reader-friendly.
Tip #97 Using a short question after a series of statements.
Tip #98 Personalize large numbers.
Tip #99 Guidelines for writers preparing manuals for non-English users
Tip #100 Use personal pronouns.

Index of Tips from #101 to 200

Tip #101 There is a difference between using “due to” and “because of.”
Tip #102 You can project a professional image by selecting the appropriate color.
Tip #103 When you need to present negative information.
Tip #104 When writing a media release, keep it simple.
Tip #105 Be specific and use terms your reader can picture.
Tip #106 When do you use “due to” or “because of”?
Tip #107 When writing instructions follow these principles:
Tip #108 Convey a friendly and confident image of yourself and your organization.
Tip #109 To gain the attention of your reader.
Tip #110 Vary the rhythm and style of your writing by…
Tip #111 When you proofread for spelling errors
Tip #112 Here are the “magic words” that writers can …
Tip #113 Avoid inserting an adverb between the word “to” and the verb.
Tip #114 Gerunds end in “ing” (working), and infinitives begin with “to” (to work).
Tip #115 If you are writing a press release…
Tip #116 Do not confuse the abbreviation e.g. with the abbreviation i.e.
Tip #117 “Oral” vs. “verbal”.
Tip #118 When writing to a business contact in another culture…
Tip #119 Do not use the word “anxious” when you mean “eager”.
Tip #120 The following tips are what NOT to put in a resume.
Tip #121 Capitalize abbreviations…

Tip #122
Here are a few Do’s and Don’ts about prepositions…

Tip #123
When a sentence contains grammatical forms inconsistent with one another a mixed construction occurs.
Tip #124 When using clip art in your business publications…
Tip #125 Email salutations ..
Tip #126 The purpose of writing a proposal is to fill a need.
Tip #127 Always include a headline with any ad, sales letter, or web-page marketing.
Tip #128 Using abbreviations and acronyms.
Tip #129 There is a direct correlation between paragraph length and comprehension.
Tip #130 The difference between affect and effect.

I received this request:

Can you explain the difference between affect and effect, with examples of each being applied?”

So, 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.

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.

Tip #131 Beware of poor English word usage.
Tip #132 Persuasive Writing.
Tip #133 A number of nouns are always considered plural.
Tip #134 The wording of written meeting minutes…
Tip #135 Avoid double comparisons.
Tip #136 Get rid of weak introductory phrases.

Examples are:

  • There is
  • There are
  • It has been
  • It appears
  • I would hope that

Rewrite the following sentences with stronger introductory phrases:

  1. There is difficulty with receiving our payments on time.

  2. I would hope that dividends will not be paid late.

  3. It appears that we do not have a winner.

  4. It has been brought to my attention that we must recount the ballots.

Tip #137 Be careful of mixed constructions or sentences that contain grammatical forms not consistent with one another.”
Tip #138 Try not to use the word “but” too often.
Tip #139 Avoid using cliches or stale expressions in your writing.
Tip #140 Use the present tense of a verb to express an idea that continues to be true.
Tip #141 Some words have more than one correct spelling.
Tip #142 To make your sentences sound clear and direct, express crucial actions as verbs.
Tip #143 Reflexive pronouns refer back to the subject.
Tip #144 Writing business plans.
Tip #145 Sentence fragments are phrases or clauses that are incorrectly treated as a sentence.
Tip #146 When writing an ad or sales letter, consider the connotation or psychological implications of the words and phrases you use.
Tip #147 Data vs. Datum–which word should you use?
Tip #148 If you have to decide what words to cut in a long sentence, choose the ones that are less precise and repetitious.
Tip #149 Amount vs. Number:

Amount vs. Number: There is confusion between the categories of words relating to amount and number. “Amount” words relate to quantities of things that are measured in bulk; “number” relates to things that can be counted.

Example: We can count the number of words, but we cannot count the amount of space we take up. Use this handy guide to help you distinguish between the categories of words:













Example: You can eat fewer cookies, but you drink less milk. If the thing being measured is being considered in countable units, then use “number” words. The most common mistake is to refer to an “amount” of people instead of a “number” of people.

Just to confuse things, “more ” can be used either way: you can eat more cookies and drink more milk.

(This information was inspired by “Common Errors in English” by Professor Paul Brians, Washington State University)

Try using this week’s tip by using the words “amount” and “number” correctly:

  1. A large (amount, number) of lumber was delivered to the construction site.

  2. A large (amount, number) of questions were asked by the employees.

  3. A large ( amount, number) of managers attended the meeting.

Tip #150 Send messages that grab your audience’s attention.
Tip #151 What is the difference between the words “impromptu” and “extemporaneous” when giving a speech?
Tip #152 Bring vs. Take.

I was asked what the difference was between “bring” and “take.” Here is the explanation provided by The Gregg Reference Manual:

“Bring” indicates motion toward the speaker. “Take” indicates motion away from the speaker.


  • Bring the report with you for tomorrow’s meeting.

  • Take this letter to Barney when you see him.

  • You may take my book with you if you will bring it back by Tuesday.

Tip #153 Write your monthly achievements in a file.
Tip #154 This spelling tip will help you if you cannot decide whether a word ends in ‘ance’ or ‘ence.’

Use the ending “ence” for words that end in an “r” preceded by a vowel and have the stress on the last syllable.

Examples of “ence” endings:
concurrence, preference. (concur, prefer)

Examples of “ance: endings:
endurance, securance. (endure, secure)

Weekly Exercise:

We receive over 200 emails per day.  We encourage you to answer our weekly tips, but please, if you are answering this weekly tip exercise,  identify the tip number in the subject line of your email.

I received the following from a subscriber:

“I’m up to my tutu in to and too. There seems to be to many ways to get confused about the use of “to” and “too”. I’m O.K. with “two” but the other two are not to simple, to me.  Am I the only one or are others confused too? So I’m writing to ask you to get back to me to tell me if the three t(w)(o)o rules below are to simple.”* Two = 2
* too = also (only ?)
* to = all other uses (all ?)ThanksFS Campi

Please correct the errors in the above sentences.  Also, please tell FS Campi what other use there is for the adverb “too.”

Tip #155 Learning to use the correct preposition
Tip #156 I received a request to explain how to use the article ‘the.’
Tip #157 ‘A’ historic occasion vs. ‘an’ historic occasion.
Tip #158 Avoid using qualifiers such as ‘little,’ ‘rather,’ or ‘very’ in your sentences.
Tip #159 Be careful about the use of “here’s” and “there’s” at the beginning of your sentence.
Tip #160 When writing an executive summary state the following:
Tip #161 The following are among the most powerful and persuasive words you can use in email promotions:
Tip #162 Words spelled with ‘ie’ or ‘ei’:
Tip #163 Make an interesting first impression with your title or headline.
Tip #164 Use a dash to set off an abrupt break..
Tip #165 Try this technique to increase your vocabulary.
Tip #166 The resume Cover Letter:
Tip #167 Resume Cover Letters -five things to think about before writing them:
Tip #168 Verbs: To be clear and direct, express crucial actions as verbs.
Tip #169 Here are some tips about web writing.
Tip #170 Avoid vague words to express yourself precisely.
Tip #171 Into vs. in to:
Tip #172 When using a coordinating conjunction…
Tip #173 Verb Tense.
Tip #174 Spell out units of measurement…
Tip #175 Here are the things that annoy people about e-mail…
Tip #176 Electronic resumes need clearly separated letters
Tip #177 More resume tips.
Tip #178 Except for diaries or personal journals, most writing is intended for one or more readers.
Tip #179 Advice on Writing Executive-Level Resumes:
Tip #180 Here’s advice about word usage in resume writing…
Tip #181 Here is what a busy executive is thinking while reading your resume:
Tip #182 Try to use the exact word you want and to avoid vague words.
Tip #183 Use a singular verb with collective nouns…
Tip #184 Make sure the pronouns you are referring to in your sentences are clear.
Tip #185 Quotation marks have three main functions:
Tip #186 To improve your writing style
Tip #187 Eliminate words you do not need in sentences.
Tip #188 Be specific about what you want in the last paragraph of a letter.
Tip #189 When writing a resume
Tip #190 The shortest and most commonly used adjectives are called articles.
Tip #191 Collective nouns such as “management, team, group, organization, and audience” take a singular verb.
Tip #192 Tip # 192: In obtaining a new job, use your network and detective skills…
Tip #193 …organize the minutes of a meeting.
Tip #194 …spelling error…
Tip #195 Be consistent in punctuation.
Tip #196 Use plain English…
Tip #197 Six essential elements of successful sales letters.
Tip #198 Minutes of meetings
Tip #199 Apostrophe Usage:
Tip #200 Slang can add a personal or cultural tone to your writing.

Index of Tips from #201 to 300

Tip #201 Do not omit essential prepositions.
Tip #202 Some foreign expressions.
Tip #203 Common resume blunders.
Tip #204 Here is another error people make in writing their resumes:
Tip #205 Appropriate length of a resume.
Tip #206 A resume should be concise
Tip #207 More resume tips.
Tip #208 Percent vs. percentage:.
Tip #209 Be careful in choosing the right word.
Tip #210 The expression ‘a couple of’…
Tip #211 The initial capital letter of a quotation…
Tip #212 Avoid misplaced modifiers…
Tip #213 Try not to string nouns together one after the other.
Tip #214 These nouns are considered plural:
Tip #215 Nouns ending in “ics”
Tip #216 More than one purpose for writing a memo…
Tip #217 Perspective vs. prospective:
Tip #218 Checklist for creating sales letters…
Tip #219 Watch your word placement.
Tip #220 An important question to ask…
Tip #221 Avoid words that put your readers on the defensive.
Tip #222 Use English words rather than French or Latin terms.
Tip #223 The subjunctive tense of a verb..

The subjunctive tense of a verb is the “wishful thinking” tense. It always uses the verbs “were” and “would.”


  1. If I were working at Bloomingdales, I would have a 20% discount on my clothes.
  2. If you were young again, you would have more hair.
  3. If I were you, I would move to the mountains.

Weekly Exercise:

We receive over 200 emails per day.  We encourage you to answer our weekly tips, but please, if you are answering this weekly tip exercise,  identify the tip number in the subject line of your email.

Change these negative sentences to more positive-sounding sentences:

  1. I’m sorry you had to wait so long.

  2. I would hate to see you experience a problem like this again.

Tip #224 Use the following phrases when communicating with your colleagues:
Tip #225 The phrase ‘reason is because’…
Tip #226 Do not use vague adjectives when specific ones are needed.
Tip #227 Because of the number of ‘spam’ messages being sent out on the internet…
Tip #228 Keep related words together.
Tip #229 Prefixes such as…
Tip #230 Suggestions for improving your resume.
Tip #231 Writing a progress report…
Tip #232 Possible vs. Feasible.
Tip #233 Time management.
Tip #234 Writing a persuasive proposal.
Tip #235 Use first- and second-person pronouns…
Tip #236 E-mail and abbreviations.
Tip #237 In proposal writing…
Tip #238 Words such as “up,” “in,” “out,” “on,” and “off,”….
Tip #239 When using possessive forms of personal pronouns…
Tip #240 …during your next performance evaluation or during a job search.
Tip #241 Do not write memos with too many words…
Tip #242 When you have two numbers used as a compound adjective…
Tip #243 When writing a proposal…
Tip #244 When writing persuasively…
Tip #245 Common pitfalls of writing.
Tip #246 tips for preparing an electronic newsletter.
Tip #247 How do you package a 15-minute speech into a few sentences?
Tip #248 Fragments are sentences without a subject and a verb.
Tip #249 Make sure your compositions…
Tip #250 Fragments.
Tip #251 Clean Up Your Language.
Tip #252 Subject or object pronouns…
Tip #253 Tips for those who are preparing a speech:
Tip #254 Use these words and phrases to motivate:
Tip #255 Be careful in determining the subject of your sentence.
Tip #256 Discriminate between words that sound alike but have different meanings.
Tip #257 Effective social and business correspondence…
Tip #258 How much do you need to write about your subject.
Tip #259 What is the difference between ‘credible’ and ‘creditable’?
Tip #260 Play a game called ‘Chop It’.
Tip #261 What’s the difference between worrying and problem-solving?
Tip #262 Only objects can be hot or cold.
Tip #263 When writing compositions…
Tip #264 Give your reports a structure:
Tip #265 Writer’s block is caused by…
Tip #266 The words ‘each,’ ‘every,’ ‘neither,’ ‘either,’ ‘another,’ and ‘much’…
Tip #267 ‘Graduated’ vs. ‘was graduated’.

Both forms are correct; however, use “from” after either expression. For example: My daughter graduated from Yale University this year.

Weekly Exercise:

We receive over 200 emails per day.  We encourage you to answer our weekly tips, but please, if you are answering this weekly tip exercise,  identify the tip number in the subject line of your email.

This week’s quiz:

Please correct the following:

  1. Fewer or less accidents (a smaller number) were reported than was expected.
  2. The drive from the airport was farther or further (in actual distance) than we expected.
  3. Everyone has been transferred except Jean and I or me.

Quote of the week:

“A writer is somebody for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.” (Thomas Mann, writer)

Tip #268 A few nouns have the same form in the singular as in the plural.
Tip #269 Before writing a proposal,
Tip #270 Some terms to use when discussing writing.
Tip #271 Ever wonder where some of our English sayings come from?
Tip #272 Before giving a presentation or a speech
Tip #273 Select the correct tone of your correspondence…
Tip #274 “Each other” vs “one another”.
Tip #275 “Less” vs “Fewer…”
Tip #276 Whenever the verb comes before the subject…
Tip #277 Business Writing Usage requires that certain words should be followed by certain prepositions.
Tip #278 Fragments are sentences without a subject and a verb.
Tip #279 Clarity is achieved when…
Tip #280 …expressions that refer to time and measurements…
Tip #281 Do not use an adverb to…
Tip #282 Accentuate the positive.
Tip #283 Some words require certain prepositions.
Tip #284 The expression “cannot help but”…”
Tip #285 Some tips on how to edit your own copy…
Tip #286 Be consistent when taking minutes at a meeting.
Tip #287 When a quoted sentence stands alone…
Tip #288 When proofreading …
Tip #289 Do not use percentages alone…
Tip #290 Correlative conjunctions…
Tip #291 The phrase ‘the reason is that’…
Tip #292 Some expressions…
Tip #293 Individual – party- person – people:
Tip #294 “Dilemma” vs. “quandary”
Tip #295 Always use a Subject in your e-mail messages.
Tip #296 Educators should not use educational jargon with parents.
Tip #297 E-mail suggestion:
Tip #298 When sending e-mails…
Tip #299 Avoid using the word ”it”…
Tip #300 Summarize long e-mail messages.

Index of Tips from #301 to 400

Tip #301 Here’s another e-mail tip:
Tip #302 More email advice:
Tip #303 When quoting a message in e-mail…
Tip #304 In writing notes…
Tip #305 Some time vs. sometime.

Some time vs. sometime. Use “some time” when you mean “an amount of time.       For example: She spent some time on that graphic presentation.” Use “sometime” when you mean “eventually.”

For example: My son will visit us sometime next year.

Weekly Exercise:

We receive over 200 emails per day.  We encourage you to answer our weekly tips, but please, if you are answering this weekly tip exercise,  identify the tip number in the subject line of your email.

Change the phrases in parentheses to one word:

  1. He (is in opposition to) the ruling party.
  2. Karen (was adamant) on the issue.
  3. The Soviet Union (was a threat to) the United States during the Cold War.

“Every great mistake has a halfway moment, a split second when it can be recalled and perhaps remedied.” (Pearl Buck, American novelist)

Tip #306 More information about email etiquette:
Tip #307 To say that you “could not care less”…
Tip #308 Hyphens can function to replace the preposition “to.”
Tip #309 Another e-mail tip:
Tip #310 Try this writing exercise to increase the odds of landing a new job…
Tip #311 E-mail has created some interesting jargon.
Tip #312 …in longer email messages…
Tip #313 Offer to write a draft of your performance review…
Tip #314 You can motivate employees by…
Tip #315 On an online resume…
Tip #316 The best proposals are written…
Tip #317 The two words that persuade…
Tip #318 Do not hyphenate…
Tip #319 …difference between “any” and “some”?
Tip #320 Watch for nouns with foreign-plural endings…
Tip #321 Separate and Joint Possessives:
Tip #322 Learn vs. teach.
Tip #323 Plurals with surnames:
Tip #324 Comma usage shouldn’t slavishly follow rules…
Tip #325 Don’t confuse linking verbs with helping verbs.
Tip #326 Don’t hide the action in your sentences…
Tip #327 Do not use a colon or comma…
Tip #328 Capitalize the first letter of every work in a title except:
Tip #329 Articles are considered adjectives.
Tip #330 When writing email…
Tip #331 Avoid using “weasel” words such as…
Tip #332 Make sure your website and your web headline
Tip #333 Make it easy for your email reader…
Tip #334 A few words ending in “ing”…
Tip #335 “Per” vs. “a”:
Tip #336 Whether you are writing a memo, letter, email…
Tip #337 Average/mean/median:
Tip #338 Save time brainstorming via e-mail.
Tip #339 Do you want to increase your internet sales?
Tip #340 …infinitive of a compound…
Tip #341 Nouns with foreign plurals:
Tip #342 Possessive abbreviations:
Tip #343 The date line of a business letter:
Tip #344 Chemical and mathematical expressions:
Tip #345 You “home” (not “hone”) in on a target.
Tip #346 When writing numbers for advertising copy…
Tip #347 Make your paragraphs and sentences readable in emails
Tip #348 …words like northern, southern, eastern, and western…
Tip #349 Capitalize…
Tip #350 The meanings of words in the English language
Tip #351 Whatever you have to say last in a written piece, make sure it has some punch.
Tip #352 Do not capitalize…
Tip #353 When “after” is used as a prefix…
Tip #354 How do words come into a language?
Tip #355 Watch your sign language.
Tip #356 Subjects in inverted sentences:
Tip #357 Compound words

Compound words with “Web” are usually two words:

  • Web site
  • Web page
  • Web browser


  • Webmaster
  • Webzine

Weekly Exercise:

We receive over 200 emails per day.  We encourage you to answer our weekly tips, but please, if you are answering this weekly tip exercise,  identify the tip number in the subject line of your email.

This week’s quiz:

Which words are correct?

  • Desk top or desktop
  • Down load or download
  • Lap top or laptop
  • Tool bar or toolbar
  • Up link or uplink

“Every job is a self-portrait of the person who did it.  Autograph your work with excellence.”

Tip #358 “As long as” vs. ”so long as”:
Tip #359 When you are dealing with an abbreviation
Tip #360 Brainstorm using e-mail…
Tip #361 Some nouns appear to be plural
Tip #362 Punctuation:
Tip #363 …the prefix “re” (meaning “again”)…
Tip #364 Most surnames are pluralized
Tip #365 …brainstorming during a strategic planning session…
Tip #366 To form the singular possessive…
Tip #367 A common noun may be used
Tip #368 …most frequently used adverbs…
Tip #369 The choice of using the “ly” form of an adjective…
Tip #370 Capitalize imaginative names and nicknames…
Tip #371 Watch out for “squinting modifiers.”
Tip #372 Words ending in “ant, ance, ent, and ence” …
Tip #373 …email attachment…
Tip #374 Avoid the use of “additionally”…
Tip #375 Another email tip.
Tip #376 The date line in correspondence…
Tip #377 Be aware of these common problems:
Tip #378 To use or not to use contractions in business writing:
Tip #379 Words to watch:
Tip #380 Different vs. differently:
Tip #381 Creating successful brochures:
Tip #382 Do not be redundant…
Tip #383 One of the uses of the comma…
Tip #384 Do not use an apostrophe
Tip #385 …some troublesome words and phrases…
Tip #386 Possessives standing alone:
Tip #387 …abbreviations …
Tip #388 Commas…
Tip #389 Retain “and” before the last item in a series
Tip #390 Fiscal vs. financial:
Tip #391 Can a writer have too many books about writing?
Tip #392 Use “only” right next to what it modifies.
Tip #393 Minutes of a meeting.
Tip #394 Is “anymore” two words or one?
Tip #395 …nouns referring to inanimate things…
Tip #396 …many common expressions…
Tip #397 Spelling tip:
Tip #398 A split infinitive…
Tip #399 Gender vs. sex:
Tip #400 Ending a sentence with a preposition

Index of Tips from #401 to 500

Tip #401 …whether a verb is singular or plural?
Tip #402 Starting with a conjunction:
Tip #403 common abbreviations
Tip #404 Due to/because of/on account of:
Tip #405 The word “hardly”…
Tip #406 The word “God”
Tip #407 Possession vs. Description.
Tip #408 try getting rid of the word “very”
Tip #409 Abbreviations on business forms.
Special Homophones or Homonyms.
Tip #410 Literally vs. figuratively:
Tip #411 Possessive of a singular noun…
Tip #412 For an irregular plural noun
Turkey Dan’s story about Turkey
Tip #413 Proofread addresses carefully
Tip #414 Headlines:
Tip #415 Frankly, quite frankly, honestly
Tip #416 Transitional devices
Tip #417 Openings:
Tip #418 The use of “said”…
Tip #419 Six rules for using “a” or “an”:
Tip #420 Majority or plurality:
Tip #421 Like most or most like?
Tip #422 Affect vs. Effect:
Tip #423 Seasonable vs. Seasonal:
Tip #424 Mixed constructions:
Tip #425 A paragraph…
Tip #426 Writing isn’t an exact science…
Tip #427 What makes some words obsolete?
Tip #428 Capitalizing Headings:
Tip #429 Intercaps:
Tip #430 Prepositions
Tip #431 English is a difficult language.
Tip #432 Spelling:
Read this book How To Overcome Failure and Achieve Success—by Napoleon Hill
Tip #433 Apostrophes:
Tip #434 Some pronouns
Tip #435 Proposal writing:
He-She Suggestions for avoiding the he/she syndrome…
Tip #436 Having a goal and writing it down
Tip #437 Language:
Tip #438 …using nouns as adjectives.
Tip #439 Use compelling verbs
Tip #440 The elements of pairs
Tip #441 bids/proposals.
Tip #442 “Off vs. “From”:
Tip #443 Web site vs. Website
Tip #444 … meaning of the word may be more important than the definition.
Tip #445 A collective noun has a singular form…
Tip #446 Make your writing more concrete.
Tip #447 Can you use “critique” as a verb?
Tip #448 Some adjectives and adverbs
Tip #449 Compound personal pronouns end in…
Tip #450 Which is the preferred style for news releases?
Tip #451 12-step program for e-mail addicts
Tip #452 Guidelines for writing sales letters:
Tip #453 To form the plural of numbers…
Tip #454 …plurals of first names…
Tip #455 Capitalize formal titles of …
Tip #456 mission vs. vision…
Tip #457 “Squinting Modifiers” …
Tip #458 Interesting pronunciations:
Tip #459 Comma Usage:
Tip #460 Plural Names and the Apostrophe
Tip #461 Don’t use words too big for the subject
Tip #462 Recommend actions …
Tip #463 Policies vs. Procedures:
Tip #464 Use repetition …
Tip #465 Problem-solving:
Tip #466 Complement vs. Compliment:
Tip #467 Revision:
Tip #468 Piqued vs. Peaked:
Tip #469 Do not mistake …
Tip #470 Job Description:
Tip #471 “We read with…”
Tip #472 “…names of organizations and products…”
Tip #473 …indefinite pronouns …
Tip #474 If a preposition …
Tip #475 New words in 2007:
Tip #476 The word “committee”…
Tip #477 “more accurate” …
Tip #478 … making a comparison …
Tip #479 Comparative Degree:
Tip #480 Linking Verbs:
Tip #481 Here’s
Tip #482 … hand-written memos
Tip #483 Placing the word “only” …
Tip #484 Post’s Mensa Invitational
Tip #485 Puns …
Tip #486 How language grows:
Tip #487 The word “meaningful” …
Tip #488 Readability Check
Tip #489 Possessive Form
Tip #490 Singular Verbs …
Tip #491 Singular Form
Tip #492 Who or Whom
Tip #493 Use of apostrophe …
Tip #494 Sound vs. Spelling
Tip #495 Exclamation marks and quotations
Tip #496 Explicit vs. Implicit
Tip #497 Improper Grammar …



List of Homophones or Homonyms

ale – ailcurrant – currentknows – nosescene – seen
all – awlcymbal – symbollain – lanesea – see
allowed – alouddear – deerlead – ledseam – seem
altar – alterdegrees – degreaselessen – lessonseine -sane
ant – auntdesert – dessertlie – lyesent – scent -cent
arc – arkdew – due – doload – lodesew – sow – so
ascent – assentdie – dyeloan – lonesheer – shear
assistance – assistantsdone – dunmade – maidshone – shown
ate – eightdough – doemail – maleshoot – chute
aught – oughtduel – dualmain-mane- Maineside – sighed
bail – baleearn – urnmanner – manorsight – site – cite
bait – bateeye – Imantel – mantleslay – sleigh
ball – bawlfair – faremaze – maizesleight – slight
band – bannedfaint – feintmeat – meetslew -slue -slough
bare – bearfeat – feetmedal – meddlesoar – sore
base – bassfined – findmight – mitesole – soul
be – beefir – furminer – minorsome – sum
beach – beechflea – fleemist – missedson – sun
beat – beetflew – flue – flumoan – mownstake – steak
beau – bowflour – flowermorn – mournstair – stare
been – binfore – four – formuscle – musselstationary – stationery
bell – belleformal, formernap – knapstaid – stayed
berry – buryfourth – forthnight – knightsteal – steel
berth – birthfoul – fowlnone – nunstile – style
bier – beerfreeze – friezenot – knotstraight – strait
billed – buildgait – gateone -wonsuite – sweet
blew – bluegamble – gambolpail – pale – paltail – tale
boar – boregreat – gratepassed – pastteam – teem
board – boredgroan – grownpause – pawstheir -there- they’re
born – borneguaranty – guaranteepair – pear – parethere’s – theirs
bough – bowguest – guessedpeace – piecethrew – through
boulder, bolderguilt – giltpeal – peelthrone – thrown
brake – breakhair – harepeer – piertide – tied
bread – bredhall – haulplain – planeto – too – two
bridal – bridlehale – hailpore – pour – poortoe – tow
buy – byhart – heartpraise -praysvail – veil – vale
cannon – canonheal – heelpray – preyvain – vane – vein
canvas – canvasshear – herepride – priedvary – very
capital – capitolheard – herdprincipal – principlevial – vile
carrot – carat – caretheir – airprofit – prophetvice – vise
cast – castehew – huerain – rein – reignwade – weighed
caught – cothigh – hiraise – raze – rayswail – whale
cede – seedhigher – hirerap -wrapwaist – waste
ceiling – sealinghim – hymnread -reedwait – weight
cell – sellhoard, horderead – redware – wear – where
cellar – sellerhoarse – horsereal – reelwave – waive
cent – sent- scenthoes – hoserespectively – respectfullyway – weigh
cereal – serialhole – wholerest -wrestweather – whether
choir – quireholy-wholly-holeyrhyme – rimeweek – weak
chord – cordhour – ourright-write-wright-ritewhich – witch
clause – clawsI’ll – owlring – wringwhine – wine
climb – climeidol – idleroad-rode-rowedwhole – hole
clothes – closein – innrole – rollwho’s – whose
coarse – courseincite – insightroot – routewood – would
complement – complimentjam – jambrose – rowswrote – rote
cord – chordkernel – colonelrough – ruffyoke – yolk
core – corpsknead – needrye – wryyou’ll – yule
council – counselknew – newrhyme – rimeyour – you’re
creak – creekknow – nosail – sale