Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

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Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

Your Pain Is Our Pleasure

24-Hour Proofreading Service—We proofread your Google Docs or Microsoft Word files. We hate grammatical errors with passion. Learn More

Discussion Forum

This is a forum to discuss the gray areas of the English language for which you would not find answers easily in dictionaries or other reference books.

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Latest Posts : Grammar

In the following sentence, are both parts of the clause correct for a present unreal sentence?

“She would have wanted you to become a doctor if she were alive today”

In this sentence, shouldn’t it be this?

“She would want you to become a doctor if she...”

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What does “that” mean in the following sentences? Are there any rules which apply to the exact phrases which “that” refers to?

1. The graphs above show the rates of electricity generation of Kansas and “that” of the U.S. total in 2010. 

Q. Doesn’t “that” refer to “electricity generation”? If yes, isn’t “of” needed before “that”? 

2. The rate of electricity generation by nuclear power plants in Kansas was about the same as that of the U.S. total. 

Q. Doesn’t “that” refer to “the rate of electricity generation by nuclear power plants”? If yes, why is it “that in the U.S. total”, instead of “that of the U.S. total” to be parallel with in Kansas?

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There is a structure used by native speakers that I often read on social media, referring to people who have passed away, on the day of their anniversary. e.g. “He would have been 60 today.” Shouldn’t it be “He would be 60 today”? Meaning, if he were alive, he would be 60 today.

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In making a plaque, I need to know the correct grammar for the following.

  1. Walking Heavens woods with her daddy.
  2. Walking Heaven’s woods with her daddy.
  3. Walking Heavens’ woods with her daddy.

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I just read this in a Wall Street Journal article

 ”Sandy Bleich, a technology industry recruiter, says that for years a bachelor’s degree was enough ... Now recruiters like SHE are increasingly looking for someone with hands-on experience...”

Query: is the use of SHE correct?!

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“I had a talk with so and so,” is a common phrase, so I would imagine that “I had a small talk with so and so,” is equally correct. But “small talk” appears to be treated as an uncountable noun most of the time. Is it countable or uncountable? If both, in what contexts does it become one or the other?

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“We have to go to the store yet.”

I would just remove the “yet” all together; however, I keep hearing someone use the word yet in this fashion and I am wondering if they are grammatically correct.

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Problem with capitalizing and pluralizing official titles. For example:

He is a State Governor (or a state governor; a State governor; a state Governor: a governor of a state; Governor of a State?) in Nigeria. 

She is a deputy registrar (or is it a Deputy Registrar?) in my university. Many Deputy Registrars (or is it deputy registrars?) attended the conference.

Some university Registrars (or is it university registrars) have criticized the policy. 

Many Presidents (or is it presidents) came in person. Others were represented by their Vice Presidents (vice presidents?)

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Is it correct to say “she is in my same school”?

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Dear Sirs, I read your post on “I was/ I were”.  I found it very helpful, resuscitating memories of English classes. I’m still not sure if I should use “was” or “were” in this sentence, below. 

“And if anyone else were to peek, they would see the bear cubs looking fast asleep, dreaming of all the things they loved.”

The “anyone else” might be peeking and might not be peeking. We don’t know. “were” sounds better to my ear, but my MS Word has it underlined in green. Who is correct? Me or the machine?

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I actually googled "pronunciation of strong" and came upon this site. It's something that I notice and wonder about often. I had a friend back in elementary school who pronounces "str" like "shtr." Every time I hear it, I think of her. I was guessing it's the way someone's mouth is shaped, like a minor speech impediment. I still don't know what to think of it but I hear it often.

eat vs. have breakfast

Good job by your side ! Keep it up

Use my brain or brains?

After reading these comments, my brains are more confused than ever before.

"I drank beer in college, and I never assaulted anyone."
"Me either" or "Me neither" or "Me too".

"I am a man, and I never assaulted anyone."
"Me either" or "Me neither? or "Me too"?

“Based out of”: Why?

This is similar to the rising popularities of using the word ‘couple’ without the necessary, following ‘of’ and those silly people answering things “yeah it is.” with a negative inflection. The latter has about run its course, thankfully, but the other two will be with us for a while yet, I fear. Hopefully though, we’ll not be too old when these heinous missteps finally die in a fire (????) like they should have done many moons ago.

No Woman No Cry

it´s like say: "without woman, there isn´t cry".

Would vs. Used To

We use "used to+verb" and "would+verb" to talk about repeated actions in the past which don't happen now.
The only difference is "Don't use "would" with state verbs".
E.g. I used to like yoghur.
Not: I would like yoghurt.
It is better to use a time clause with the first sentence (of a story) if you want to use "would".
E.g. when I was a child, I would eat chocolate everyday.
When you are in doubt, use "ued to". ????

Political correctness was probably the mother of this, one of the dumbest phrases yet. The FBI is going to "reach out" to the second alleged witness in the Kavanaugh case? Reach out? That was the official announcement. From my many years of experience the FBI doesn't reach out. It interrogates, investigates, questions, digs, intimidates, et al. It never "reaches out."

I versus Me

They awarded the prize to Ollie and me and both of us were really proud.
Is that correct

Past tense of “text”

My feeling is this - people seem to be put off by "texted" because it sounds like the "d" sound is redundant due to what 'Rdajer' referred to as an, "awkward two syllable jump," which is uncomfortable in the mouth to some people when saying it. To them, it 'feels' wrong. To me, "texted" is correct because "text," as a noun is in and of itself a complete word; a complete thought. Add "ed" to the end of "text" to get the past tense, just as in "tested." Otherwise, its like saying that the thing isn't "text" at all, but rather a "tex," (as in, "I sent her a "tex" this afternoon"), in which case we would use "texed" as the past tense.