Saturday, April 5, 2014

Carol Buckland: Grammar Bootcamp

Carol's Grammar Reminders, By Grace Ries

·      subject-verb agreement
            single subject- single verb/ plural subject- plural verb
·      active vs. passive voice
            active- subject does the action/ passive- subject receives the action
·      parallel structure
            repetition of a chosen grammatical form within a sentence
·      dangling modifiers      
            groups of words that add description, but are found away from the noun          they are modifying- can become confusing
·      comma splice
            Two independent clauses connected by a comma

Common Usage Errors

·      It’s = it is, its = possessive
·      lay, must have object
·      lie needs no object
·      affect almost always a verb
·      effect almost always a noun
·      there = place
·      they’re = they are
·      their = possessive

Writing for Broadcast Tips

·      If you can take words or phrases out without changing the fundamental meaning- THEN DO IT!
·      examples:
                  - redundancies
                        - circumlocutions “beating around the bush”
                        - gratuitous intensifiers/ qualifiers

·      Broadcast writing is writing for the ear, however pictures always trump words. Keep it simple and conversational.
·      Broadcast writing is in the present tense- says vs. said
·      Attribution comes at the start of the sentence
·      Use a lead in sentence to alert viewers or listeners that the story is beginning and prepare them for what is to follow.
·      Writing for copy:
                  - all capitals
                  - can underline, use elipses
                  - spaces between sentences
                  - one syllable words as much as possible
                  - word play is tacky and unoriginal
Analyze how FOX news, NPR, and The New York Times cover the same story (it is student's job to pick the story). Oral presentation next class.

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