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 : Punctuation and Mechanics

Which of the follow is correct? 

  • CAYA stands for “come as you are.” 
  • “CAYA” stands for “come as you are.”               

I am not referring to the Nirvana song, so I assume that capitalization is not necessary when spelling out what the initialism stands for.

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If a city and state (and full date) start a sentence in possessive form, would you consider the punctuation correct in the following three examples?

  • Frankfort, Kentucky’s crime rate has increased.
  • Paris, France’s breathtaking sights left us in a state of raptures.
  • September 11, 2001’s tragic events will forever be indelibly etched in the minds of everyone.

Please, no recasts. 

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When including a complete sentence in parentheses, what are the rules? For example, someone just sent me this in an email:

“I always change some of the readings from semester to semester (for example, I am trying out the book on migration for the first time this semester and am not sure if I will keep it in the Fall).”

But I could just as easily see it written this way:

“I always change some of the readings from semester to semester. (For example, I am trying out the book on migration for the first time this semester and am not sure if I will keep it in the Fall.)”

Are both acceptable? Is one preferred? 

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When making a list of the very same name of something, is it proper english to use one quotation mark in place of the same name or word after writing it a couple of times down the list? I can’t seem to find anything on it.

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Which ending punctuation sequence is correct for a question dialogue sentence containing a quotation within it?

a. ”Does the menu say, ‘no substitutions?’” asked Jo.

or

b. ”Does the menu say, ‘no substitutions’?” asked Jo.

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My friend is sending an invitation, and she is using the date of:

January, 16th 2016

Is this technically correct, or at a minimum not considered barbaric? Where should the comma be?

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In a sentence, there is the name of a company followed by an abbreviation, the initials of the company, in parentheses. The company name is a possessive in this sentence. Where does the apostrophe go? I want to know how this would work, as I am having trouble finding anything but advice to restructure the sentence, and I would like an answer that gives me what to do with the sentence as it stands.

Example: This policy sets a standard for determining access to Introspective Illusions (II) resources.

Would it be Introspective Illusions’ (II’s) or  Introspective Illusions’ (II) or some other construction?

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Should a rhetorical question end with a question mark?

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I have a question about “;” and “—” as used in sentence structure. I prefer using — i.e. “He did not expect to meet anyone—the house had been empty for years—and was surprised to hear whistling from the upper floor.”

Now, as I wrote a line in my story, as sentence ran away from me and I ended up using a ; at the end, as well as the — and I got the feeling that maybe it had to be one or the other all the way through and not a mix. Anyway, the sentence (racial slur warning)

Rod had not let her buy the beer herself at first—not until father had gone down there and cleared up some misconceptions from that sneaky pool-digger—and hadn’t that been a fun day to be alive; now he just gave her sympathetic looks whenever she came to get beer for her father.

So, in such a sentence, is it right to use both the “—” and the “;”? I can always rebuild it, but it felt right to me somehow, even though I got uncertain about if it would sting in the eyes of others.

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Could I use both a colon and semicolon in a sentence?

A college will provide help for students who are struggling in homework; the resources are: study skills that help students to be on top of coursework, counselors will give advices dealing with the workload, and the option to drop a class early.

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Latest Comments

Texted

I feel that "text ed" sounds redundant I feel that texted sounds redundant if if you pronounce text fully you don't need to enunciate the Ed just my opinion

If you refer to this source to the experts from this service https://paperell.com/write-my-thesis , who have been writing thesis for many years, then it would be correct to say “graduated from high school”. The current standard usage is to say someone graduated FROM high school. By 1963, the fourth edition of H. L. Mencken's book "The American Language" said that the active form had triumphed over the passive form because of the American drive to simplify the language. https://www.grammarly.com/

Sells or sold?

Yeah, i agree with Rik853,
"Sold only if they used to sell them but they do not sell them anymore."

Fetch Referring to People?

  • Boopy
  • July 24, 2021, 1:09pm

A friend of mine was banned from Barnes and noble when he went in on crutches and asked an employee to fetch some books for him as it would be impossible for him to do so. He’s from North Carolina. He has very good manners.

Regarding the many commenters who've made the "You wouldn't say sheeps..." argument:

Isn't that a classic case of begging the question (in the actual meaning of that oft-misused phrase, i.e., to assume the truth of the premise of one's argument)?

Who decreed that "Lego" is equivalent to "sheep" and "deer," for example, with regard to the toy name supposedly also being a plural forms not needing to end with "s"? And why does the "LEGO/Lego/Legos" debate attract more fervor than does the constant and potentially dangerous misuse of "media" as a monolithic singular entity?

If Ford declares that, henceforth, its name is also a plural, would I then be wrong to say, "I own two Fords"?

If I had told my grammatically precocious child, "Pick up your Lego," he would have scoffed, "Which one?"

Hi, I’ve read your article happily. I am also Hungarian like your father. Do you speak Hungarian?

There are LEGO tiles, LEGO bricks, LEGO plates, LEGO minifigs, LEGO wheels, LEGO sets, LEGO books etc etc etc. you want to pluralize something, pluralize the item, not the brand.

wrong
if that were the case gooses would be plural for goose and mices would be plural for mouse
It's not even an English word so how can you tack on English grammar rules to it? "Lego", derived from the Danish phrase leg godt [lɑjˀ ˈgʌd], which means "play well". So it's a verb. Verbs are not pluralized.

“Let his/him come in.”

Let him come in. That’s it. Sorry.

You simply would not hear possessive “his” in this context.