Copywriting Curiosities
  The writing tips your English teacher forgot to give you... December 30, 2004  

Happy New Year!

About National Novel Writing Month...

In my October newsletter, I mentioned that I'd be taking part in National Novel Writing Month. I made a commitment to write 50,000 words in 30 days. Well, guess what? I made it. At around 8:00 p.m. on November 30, 2004, I hit 50,000 words (190 pages).

I'm about half way done with my novel. The goal is to finish it in early 2005 and then work on a rewrite. I hope to have a draft in the hands of my "first readers" by the end of the spring.

Thanks to all of you who e-mailed me with your encouragement along the way. As you noticed, you didn't receive a newsletter in November. Now you know why!

I wish you and your families a happy, healthy, and prosperous 2005!
Robyn Bradley "E.T. Robbins"

Visit NaNoWriMo's site:

   Dear Reader,

Happy (almost) 2005! It's time to make a resolution to break some bad word-choice habits. Here are some that I hear and read all the time. Strike 'em from your memory bank.

  • 1. Irregardless or Regardless?
  •   Regardless is correct.

  • 2. "I could care less" or "I couldn't care less."
  •   Which is correct? Use this: I couldn't care less.

  • 3. Compliment and Complement
  •   A compliment (as a noun) means an act of praise. A complement (again, as a noun) means something that completes or brings to perfection.

    Example: She received many compliments about her pearl earrings. Example: Her pearl earrings were the perfect complement to her outfit.

  • 4. Loose and Lose
  •   Loose is an adjective meaning "not fastened." Lose is a verb meaning "to mislay" or "to not win."

    Example: I like jeans that are loose around my waist because it's more comfortable to sit. Example: I hate it when I lose my keys.

  • 5. There, They're, and Their
  •   "There" is an adverb or an expletive. "They're" is a contraction for "they are." "Their" is a possessive pronoun.

    Example (taken from Diana Hacker's "A Writer's Reference"): Adverb: Sylvia is lying there unconscious. Expletive: There are two plums left. Contraction: They're going to the movies on New Year's Day. Possessive Pronoun: Carol and Paul are going to the movies once they finish their homework.

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