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Commonly confused words: alter vs. altar

Hello, and welcome back to [community profile] fandom_grammar!  We’re in our new digs on Dreamwidth—mind the fresh paint!—and ready to answer your grammar questions.  Today we’ll ease back in to a regular posting schedule, starting off with a couple of commonly confused words that have similar spellings but very different meanings.  Let’s take a look at alter and altar, with some help from the Avengers.

How can we alter that altar?

We're Moving!

fandom_grammar is moving to DreamWidth! Through the first part of the year, we'll be cross-posting links for new articles, but if you already have a DW account (or were thinking about moving to DW yourself), you can find us at [community profile] fandom_grammar. Same great articles, comics, and grammar and writing content—and the same writing team!

We look forward to bringing you more grammar-related content through 2017 at our new DW home.

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Fandom Grammar Will Return in February!

We hope everyone is having a good start to their new year! Fandom Grammar will be turning TEN this fall, so keep an eye out for some fresh ideas coming later this year!

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Friday Funnies: Well Grammar


Source: Bizarro


My first thought on reading this is that the "real" should actually be "really", but that's probably just me being pendantic.

But this comic brings home the point of proper comma usage, too. If I was that bully, I'd probably punch the well-digger in the nose for calling me "Stupid."

So how would you rewrite this comic to be more grammatically correct?


"* Mad about jorts"


When I showed this comic to the other fandom grammarians they loved it. Have you seen something similar? Does the person who is the first to criticize someone wearing white after Labor Day behave in the same way as the person who goes ballistic at the inappropriate usage of an apostrophe? Then perhaps you're seeing the same correlation that Randall Munroe of XKCD does.
Happy Monday, and welcome to the next installment of Say What?, in which we discover the origins of (Don’t) upset the applecart and The apple never falls far from the tree. With examples from SupernaturalCollapse )

Answer: Is 'series' singular or plural

Today's question is about whether or not the word series is singular or plural. Because the English language can be a touch on the unexpected side, the answer to that is that it's both.
Read more under the cutCollapse )

ANSWER: Hear, hear or here, here?

This week we are going to focus on the proper use of hear, hear vs here, here. And we're going to have help from the Stargate SG-1 crew.

Read more...Collapse )
It’s Monday again, dear Fandom Grammar readers!  Considering this particular day of the week means trading leisure for work (or schoolwork) for the next five days, it’s easy to feel gloomy on Mondays and gawk at the long wait until Friday.  But today we’re going to focus on the positive instead of the negative, like our two idioms of the day suggest: “The darkest hour is just before the dawn” and “every cloud has a silver lining.”  To better shine the light on these two Positive-Polly phrases, we’ll get some help from the characters of Silent Hill, who are experts at finding their way in the dark.

Click on this cut for illumination on these two idioms.Collapse )

ANSWER: "envy" versus "jealousy"

Happy Halloween, dear Fandom Grammar readers!  Since we find ourselves once again on that most famous Day of Ghouls and Fright, it is only fitting that we examine two very terrible, very different, but often mistaken words whose definitions are no less insidious for the error: envy and jealousy.  Such a daunting challenge requires the assistance of those who have experience investigating humankind’s inner malice.  So, aiding us in our investigation of these two “evils within” will be Detective Sebastian Castellanos and the other characters from The Evil Within.

This won’t hurt—too much. Let’s get started, shall we?Collapse )

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