Homophones and Homonyms

are words that sound like another when spoken but have different meanings and use, different spelling and origin.

Homonyms are words that are spelled like another but of a different meaning.
(e.g., bank= a place where you keep money,
bank= the edge of a river.

Words from the first group are the most common misused words in the English language when writing.

Most of the mistakes I see in writing on websites and blogs are words that are used quite often in the English language. Most of them fall into the homophones category. I see a lot of blogs that contain these common mistakes. Needless to say after a while I quit reading the blogs. So this is a reminder to all bloggers READ what you post and look for these common mistakes. I'm sure your readers will be very thankful.

I have been receiving emails with questions about oxymoron, euphemism, metaphor, cliche, palindrome,
anagram, and pleonasm.

The most frequent ones we see on the internet are usually OXYMORON. I know you have received (as all of us have) some ads/emails that say free loan, biggest little, and/or pretty ugly. I get a laugh every time I see these ads.

Well, my dear readers here are the answers to what each of these are.

oxymoron: a figure of speech by which a locution produces an incongruous, seemingly self-contradictory effect, as in "cruel kindness"

euphemism: 1. the substitution of a mild, indirect, or vague expression for one thought to be offensive, harsh, or blunt. 2. the expression so substituted: "To pass away" is a euphemism for "to die."

metaphor: a figure of speech in which an expression is used to refer to something that it does not literally denote in order to suggest a similarity, as in "love is a battlefield.

cliche': A phrase or opinion that is overused and betrays a lack of original thought. For example: "One man’s trash is another man’s treasure."

palindrome: A word, phrase, verse, or sentence that reads the same backward or forward. For example: A man, a plan, a canal, Panama!

anagram: a word, phrase, or sentence formed from another by rearranging its letters: “Angel” is an anagram of “glean.”

pleonasm: 1. the use of more words than are necessary to express an idea; redundancy.
2. an instance of this, as free gift or true fact.
3. a redundant word or expression.

A little language humor

A little language humor

Word for the week: arachibutyrophobia

Learn a new word every week to expand your vocabulary.

Almost everyone likes peanut butter but there are some who suffer with arachibutyrophobia

rachibutyrophobia : fear of peanut butter sticking to roof of mouth

I don't think a Psychiatrists, Psychologists, Psychotherapists or a Mental Health Specialists
would ever use this word in front of a patient who has this phobia even if it is the correct word for their fear.

hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia... the fear of long words

Adj.; A subject of jest or mockery – This word describes a person, thing or situation that is likely to be the butt of jokes. Use it when you want to sound justified in poking fun at someone.
erotem: noun; The symbol used in writing known as a question mark...?
Phantomnation: "rare" noun; a perfect example of a ghost word--a word that exists only in a dictionary and has never actually been used.

neologism: noun ; coining of new words, new word or meaning

enormity: noun;heinousness, evilness, wickedness, monstrous, great size

abscond: verb; to run away and hide, depart hurriedly, avoid arrest.

samizdat: noun; clandestine publication of banned literature

anomaly: noun; something different, abnormal, peculiar, or not easily classified; deviation from the normal or common order, or form, or rule; a person who is unusual

obfuscate: verb; To make something obscure or hard to understand. ( Like the tax codes)

quintessence: noun; purest and most perfect form, manifestation, type, or embodiment

Lipogram: noun; A piece of writing that avoids one or more letters of the alphabet. From Greek lipo- (lacking) + gram (something written).]

triskaidekaphobia: noun; Fear of the number 13.

anomalous: adjective; irregular, deviant, abnormal

diatribe: noun; a bitter verbal attack or speech

ennui: noun; mental weariness, boredom

aficionado: noun; devotee of a sport or pastime

Saturday, April 30, 2011

How to get more readers to your blog

No one likes to read a blog or website that contains words they have never seen or understand. So it would be best to keep them plain and simple. Just because you know these "big" words doesn't mean everyone does. It's a true fact that the easy to read blogs have the most readers.

Here are some tips for keeping your writing user-friendly:

# Keep Sentences Short.
# Use words your readers are likely to understand.
# Use only as many words as you really need.
# Prefer the active voice.
# Write as if you were talking to one person.
# Use the clearest, liveliest verb to express your thoughts.
# Use Vertical Lists to make complex material understandable.
# Try to avoid sexist usage.
# Put accurate punctuation at the heart of your writing.
# Avoid being enslaved by seven writing myths. It's okay to start a sentence with And or But
# Plan Before You Write.
# Organize your material in a simple way.
# Consider different ways of setting out your information.
# Use clear layout to present your plain words. Show some white space between paragraphs.
# Remember to keep it simple so everyone can read and understand what you write.


Anonymous said...

"Keep Sentences Short". Aren't there two too many capital letters?

Study Agent said...

You have some interesting thoughts! Perhaps we should contemplate about attempting this myself.

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Boundless Technologies said...

Very pleased to find this site.I wanted to thank you for this great read!!


Mian Irfan Ali said...

its nice to have such blog which can help us to make our English free of grammar mistake.

i have also working on this and posted a document about Active and Passive Voice at here


i hope you people will visit it and leave some useful comments. thanks

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Katherine Muniz said...

I LOVE this. But I only have one complaint. I think that if the blogger actually knows how to use the 'big' word correctly it won't affect reading speed or comprehension from the readers. There are bloggers out there that use 'big' words because they think it makes them seem more intelligent. Unfortunately for them, most of the time you can tell that they used a thesaurus.
Which writer was famous for saying, "Stick with what you know"?

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Another great article. I like that you are very honest and direct to the point


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