Judy Vorfeld DID YOU KNOW THAT when using the minus sign, you use a hyphen, not a dash. Word has all kinds of dashes that can pop up when you least expect them: em and em dashes, "named for the length of a typeface's lower-case n and upper-case M respectively," says Wikipedia. Confused? Use the word "minus." To indicate temperatures below zero, write "minus 10" or "5 below zero."
Judy Vorfeld "The written word," says Rich Becker, "is one of the most accurate and flexible means of communication ever conceived and we're living in an era where we can access more of it than ever before in human history." This colorful writer, businessman, and educator just posted an article, "Five Popular Content Writing Tips That Are Dead Wrong." He explains the following items in full in his blog post: 1. Everything is trending toward less words so write less. 2. Adding exciting words to marketing copy will jazz it up. 3. Writing catchy copy takes almost no time at all. 4. Persuasion and believability comes from good writing alone. 5. One medium will rule them all and in the darkness bind them. Take a few moments to hear Becker out. Writing proficiency is vital, and it is diminishing in the U.S. Not good. Rich Becker is an accomplished businessman who has also taught writing, editing, and social media classes at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas for more than ten years. Subscribing to his blog is one of the smartest moves I've made in my business.
Judy Vorfeld Sometimes life gets complicated. Especially if you're writing something and you choose the wrong spelling and the book isn't edited and it is published for millions of people to see. On the other hand, it proves you are human. But there is so much help available that you can find answers to almost anything regarding writing or spelling. I recently read a good novel that used "discrete" instead of "discreet," and promised myself I'd blog about it to help others. Discreet You are discreet when you show self-control in your behavior. You don't call attention to the situation. If you need to leave the room to visit the bathroom, you make a discreet exit. At least I hope so, because probably no one is interested in where you're going. If you watch Downton Abbey, you'll understand what it's like to be discreet. Almost all the gossip is done discreetly, except when the screenwriter wants to create tension. Discrete When you think "discrete," try to think "separate," "distinct." If you think of society, you think of it as a discrete "whole" or "entity" created of individual agents. You could think of a birthday cake created with discrete items: M&Ms, chocolate chips, nuts, coconut, candied fruit, etc. On the other hand, you might say the cake had lots of goodies in it. There's also something mathematical about "discrete," but I either got low grades or flunked mathematics, so I'll just say that in math, discrete has to do with finite or countable sets of value. Or something.