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There are many resources you can use to help you be a better writer. The most important of these is a dictionary. Any reputable dictionary will do.

For those in search of synonyms, a thesaurus is a useful tool. Roget's is the best known thesaurus. However, HMG cautions against running to the thesaurus to find unusual replacements for perfectly useful, simple words. There is really no need to say "gangle-shanked" when "tall" will do.

There are numerous books that teach grammar and style. The best known are:

  • Elements of Style by Strunk and White
  • The Chicago Manual of Style.

A recent release, which HMG has found most useful, is Woe Is I by Patricia T. O'Conner.

In addition, a helpful reader highly recommends The Complete Transitive Vampire and The New Well-Tempered Sentence, both by Karen Elizabeth Gordon. Your local bookstore or the reference section of your library should have a selection of such volumes.

This concludes Holy Mother Grammatica's lessons in good writing. Should you have any questions, HMG would be happy to answer them for you.

She can be reached at the following e-mail address:



Show Don't Tell


Point of View

Tense Persons


Names, Pronouns, Descriptive Phrases



Plurals, Numbers, and Apostrophes


Common Errors


Favorite Bloopers

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Favorite Bloopers->