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

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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Andrew Cuomo, in his popular COVID press conferences, often uses the words “dose” and “dosage” interchangeably (at least so it seems). Here is an example:

“We have the operational capacity to do over 100,000 doses a day — we just need the dosages.”

Here is another:

“To date, New York has administered 2.5 million dosages, with about 10% of New Yorkers receiving their first dose. Ninety-two percent of dosages allocated to the state to date have been used.”

I thought “dosage” refers to the amount in a dose, like x milligrams. A single dosage can have multiple milligrams, so, when you pluralize “dosage,” what exactly are you referring to, if not the number of doses?

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Dog barking (movie’s subtitles)

Jennifer speaking (phone conversation)

Question: why “barking” instead of “IS barking”, and “speaking” instead of “IS speaking”? 

What grammar point is that? Isn’t it Present Continuous?

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I recently ran across the working word in a document that was: “re-substantial.”

Even if it were only listed as "resubstantial," my question is this: Is this even a real word? If it is, what on earth does it actually mean?

Your help is greatly needed.

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1.  You don’t know how I am delighted to have you as a friend

2.  You don’t know how delighted I am to have you as a friend.

3. I hope one day I can do something for you to show you how you are lovable in my heart and mind.

4. I hope one day I can do something for you to show you how loved you are in my heart and mind.

Sentences 2 and 4 are correct; sentences 1 and 3 are not.  Please could you explain why?  Thank you.

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Is it grammatically ok to use the adjective “respective” with a singular noun ?

Many dictionaries such as Longman define the term “respective” as follows.

used before a plural noun to refer to the different things that belong to each separate person or thing mentioned.

But, I often see “respective” used with a singular noun as follows (cited from an Internet site).

Each of the Division’s three regional offices - in Chicago, New York, and San Francisco - handles criminal matters arising in its respective area and serves as the Division’s liaison with U.S. attorneys, state attorneys general, and other regional law enforcement agencies.

I wonder if the above usage is now common, though it is gramatically incorrect.

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Is it possible to say “by the time we arrived at the cinema, the film was starting”? Or do I have to say “the film had started”? 

Both structures sound ok to me if I use another verb (sleep) instead of “start” (“by the time I got there, he was already sleeping”) so I do not know if I am using the structure right (perhaps I should use “when” and not “by the time”) or if it is the verb “start” (due to its meaning) what makes “by the time we arrived, the film was starting” sound strange. 

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I’ve read a sentence like this:

Not only did George buy the house, but he also remodeled it.

think this counts as a complex sentence, but I want to get some extra opinions.  Doesn’t “Not only did George buy the house” modify “remodeled,” thus making the first clause dependent?  In common English usage, the position of the subject “George” after “did” is fine in an interrogative sentence, but it’s not in a declarative sentence.  Does the departure from standard declarative syntax suggest that the first clause is not independent (and therefore dependent)?

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In our office we are advocates for our client and in representing what we do with a client we have times that we advocate for our clients. I am under the impression that you can advocate for your client to do something with them and several of my co workers disagree stating that you can only advocate for them to receive something with another provider or resource. Who is corrent? examples:

Can you correctly say:

“the care support provider provided advocacy in encouraging the client to participate in therapy” or the “Care manager advocated with the client to participate in therapy weekly.”

Can we advocate for a client to do something that they are recommended to do. Using advocated in the place of “encouraged”

office question responses appreciated.

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I thought you could put /s/ on a copy of a signed letter to indicate the original had been signed. Right or wrong?

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I have recently been seeing rejections of many phrases with ‘of’ in them because they are “less concise.” An example of this would be changing “All six of the men were considered dangerous” to “All six men were considered dangerous.” Recently, someone corrected a sentence I wrote and it just doesn’t sound right even though it may be concise. They changed “There are six species of snakes and four species of butterfly on the list” to “There are six snake species and four lizard species on the list.”

Bonus question: Is it “species of butterfly” or “species of butterflies”?

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Latest Comments

This phrase has irritated me for so long that lately every time I receive an email from a coworker who is going to 'reach out' to some one else I want to give that email a nice delete and forget about it!

How about we call it 1st of an annual event if you feeL you must have 1st annual and then you might add unless interfered with an act of GOD; whereby, you may better use inaugural/final as God wills it.

can you use an uncountable noun as a countable one?
Is it okay to say I play musics? Do you give people advices? I would like some informations about this. And if I'm wrong that would be extraordinary newses.
I'm not saying I don't have excess baggagess, but I find it important to use our intelligences to get this right.
I can feel the electricitys in the air about this topic and I'm willing to put moneys on it... I don't care, I'll even wager some rices too. I'd bet all the petrols at the refinery too. Golds? I'll buy some to bet against your supply of lumbers.

Hit me up, we can discuss it over coffees, while we watch the tennises down by the concretes.

If this comment does your head in, then you are proof that it's LEGO, not LEGOs.

Thank you for such a visual explanation of the subject. I think it will be useful for many students. I advise those who want to master grammar at an excellent level to use training videos on YouTube, in which experienced teachers tell the grammar rules of the English language in an accessible form. I found more than a hundred videos on this topic there and noticed that most of them were posted by channels with about 23 thousand subscribers! I am sure this is because the authors of such channels used the services of in order to wind up subscribers for YouTube.

Cool insformation, thank you!

“hate with passion”

  • venqax
  • February 25, 2021, 6:33pm

I think you're correct to say that including "a" in all the examples slightly changes the meaning of the phrase. Both a'ed and a-less seem grammatically fine. I would also say that "hate with a passion", specifically, is an idiomatic expression, so somewhat immune to routine rules. You done good. It ain't over till it's over.

I would say that with the use of "not only", the "also" is simply redundant, and so unnecessary. The "but" might not even be needed, though just being concise for its own sake isn't always the best way to go.

"Not only did George buy the house, but he remodeled it."

By the time

  • venqax
  • February 25, 2021, 6:06pm

I think either would be okay, grammatically. As others have said, in this case "was starting" might be more specific and therefore informative, if in fact the film was just beginning. Saying "had started" is more ambiguous about how long it had been running. If it had been going for, say, half an hour, you probably wouldn't say it was starting, but might still say it had started.

Just curious, but what is "resubstantial" intended to mean, in context?

Fora vs Forums

I love your pop up. Just clicked "no" on the "need a proofreader" question and was greeted with: "OK, genius. Good luck." The next time I do need a proofreader, you will be my first stop. All the best!