Monthly Archives: January 2015

A fairy tale

Simon Heffer has written a historical fantasy:

heffer fairytale

This story needs, shall we say, a little clarification. Are you sitting comfortably? Then I’ll begin… Continue reading

A test of grammar

The magazine Management Today recently published a grammar quiz and a list of tips by my friend Andrew Ingram (who runs Better Business Writing) and me. As MT’s readers are probably a bit less fascinated by this stuff than my blog’s readers are, here I’m reproducing the questions with a more extended discussion of what they mean.

The questions

1) “They decided to quickly recommend hiring her.”
Would you move the word “quickly” to somewhere else in the sentence?

2) “This was a collaboration between the London, Birmingham and Manchester offices.”
Would you change “between” to “among”?

3) “None of the people in that meeting are your friends.”
Would you change “are your friends” to “is your friend”?

4) “You can leave your coats and bags in our cloakroom downstairs.”
Would you change “can” to “may”?

5) “We have so much data that it will take a few weeks to analyse.”
Would you treat “data” as a plural?

6) “Someone older than me would expect to have been promoted by now.”
Would you change “than me” to “than I”?

7) “You’ll never guess who we’ve just recruited.”
Would you change “who” to “whom”?

8) “Anna and Bill wondered which of them would get through all their emails first.”
Would you alter “their” used this way?

How did you do? Continue reading