Your grammar dilemmas solved!

Let me take the worry out of writing for you, either through my training courses or by using my extensive editorial experience to smooth out the wrinkles in your written work.

Customised training for organisations

Are you worried about misplaced apostrophes or other errors in your organisation's communications? Let me provide training tailored to your staff, using examples and exercises from your organisation's publications to reduce embarrassment.

Read More

Professional development for teachers

Choose from one-day refresher and intensive courses designed to expand on the English syllabus delivered at your school or longer comprehensive courses at a convenient inner north-west or south-eastern location.

Read More

Grammar Boot Camp

Are grammar errors holding you back in work or study? Are punctuation errors putting followers off your blog?
From apostrophes to zeugma, refresh, raise and reboot your grammatical skills and communications confidence.
Grammar Boot Camp – it's training for your brain.

Read More

A red-hot metal horseshoe on a blacksmith’s anvil

Using hyphens in multi-word adjectives

Hyphens and compound adjectives We know that we use adjectives to describe nouns, pronouns and other adjectives. But when we have a long string of adjectives before a noun, it is possible that some of them describe another adjective, rather than the noun at the end of the string. Consider these two sentences: The blacksmith

Read More

Good, better, best: comparing adjectives and the problem of modified absolutes

Adjectives have an interesting feature: we can compare many of them, and then use these comparisons to compare nouns. Trinidad and Tobago had a fast team in the men’s relay. The USA had a faster team. Jamaica, with Usain Bolt, had the fastest team of all. The different forms of the adjective fast (faster, fastest)

Read More

Great green dragons: the order and types of adjectives

J.R.R. Tolkien, the professor of languages more famous for being the author of The Hobbit and The Lord of Rings, was fascinated by the idea of dragons from an early age. When he was about seven he began to compose his own story about a dragon. ‘I remember almost nothing about it except a philological

Read More

Yellow, red, orange and blue shipping containers stacked on top and beside each other

Adjectives: an introduction

Adjectives have a simple use: they describe nouns, and also pronouns and other adjectives. A simple definition is that adjectives are ‘describing words’. If we think of nouns as containers of meaning, adjectives help to give extra definition to our meaning. We can talk about a container, for example, or a yellow container or a

Read More

Commonly confused words: medal and meddle and pedal and peddle (and pedaller and pedlar)

Medal and meddle The difference between medal and meddle is straightforward: a medal is a small, wearable ornament, usually a metal disk, that usually either commemorates an event or has been awarded in recognition of some achievement. We see returned service personnel or their descendants wear their medals as they march on Anzac Day or

Read More