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The Great Grammar Compendium



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Sat Sep 14, 2013 6:33 pm
barefootrunner says...



II) TENSES

i. Most common tenses:

1.) Present simple: This is exactly what is happening now. Nothing complicated.
We go to the beach.
I sense the cold.
The zombies try to eat us.


2.) Past simple: This happened before the present.
We went to the beach.
I sensed the cold.
The zombies tried to eat us.


3.) Future simple: This is an event that will happen in the future. It is formed by using “shall” + verb for first person (I or we) and “will” + verb for second/third person (you, they, he etc.). “Shall” is also used when a commanding or certain tone is used, e.g. You shall eat your food!
We shall go to the beach.
I shall sense the cold.
The zombies will try to eat us.


4.) Present continuous: This is an action which is happening now, that is incomplete, in progress or still happening.
We are going to the beach.
I am sensing the cold.
The zombies are trying to eat us.


5.) Past continuous: This is a continuous action which was in progress in the past.
We were going to the beach when you arrived.
I was sensing the cold while you went to fetch blankets.
The zombies were trying to eat us all day.


6.) Future continuous: This continuous action will be in progress in the future:
At this time tomorrow, we shall be going to the beach.
I shall be sensing the cold by the time you come back with the blankets.
The zombies will be trying to eat us while we escape.


7.) Present perfect: This is an action that has happened in the past, but has consequences that are felt in the present.
We have gone to the beach already, so you will have to go alone.
I have sensed the cold and am waiting in suspense for warm blankets.
The zombies have tried to eat us in the past, so we’re not afraid of them.


8.) Past perfect: This tense describes an action that happened before another action that was already in the past:
We had gone to the beach before they arrived.
I had sensed the cold by the time they brought the blankets.
The zombies had tried to eat us before, so we were not afraid when they rocked up at my house yesterday.


9.) Future perfect: This is an action that will happen before another action that is in the future:
We shall have gone to the beach by the time that they arrive.
I shall have sensed the cold before they will bring the blankets.
The zombies will have tried to eat us by then.
"Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts" - Einstein
  





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Sat Sep 14, 2013 6:34 pm
barefootrunner says...



ii. Tense Usage:

In writing a novel, you will probably mainly be using the past simple or present simple tense. Writing a novel in the present is invitingly simple. More experienced writers often opt for the past tense. This may cause some unexpected twists in your tense usage … .

Ralph flung his backpack on the roof and clambered up the last rungs of the ladder. It was quiet up here, at least when there were no bird migrations. This was where he did his homework, because, so he reasoned, who could bother him? He glanced around, only to find that his backpack, which he had thrown so carelessly on the slippery roof, was sliding down the pitch.

Don’t forget to put PAST PAST actions into the past perfect!
"Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts" - Einstein
  





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Sat Sep 14, 2013 6:35 pm
barefootrunner says...



III) GRAMMATICAL PERSON

i. First person:

When you write in the first person, you write out of the perspective of a “me”. This is most useful for showing the emotions of your narrator. The limitation is that it is usually impossible to let the readers know about something that the narrator doesn’t know. It also presents a very biased view of the events in a story. Be careful not to allow your own personality to shine through the narrator! It’s very easy to write from your own perspective instead of that of your character. The first person is usually used by inexperienced writers, because it is easy to use, but can also be used very effectively by experienced writers.
"Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts" - Einstein
  





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Sat Sep 14, 2013 6:36 pm
barefootrunner says...



ii. Second person:

This person is very rare. It is written out of the perspective of a “you”. You usually find it in interactive books like the “Choose Your Own Adventure” series. Some, but very few, serious books use the second person perspective, which can be either a complete disaster, or a breathtaking experience.
"Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts" - Einstein
  





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Sat Sep 14, 2013 6:36 pm
barefootrunner says...



iii. Third person:

This is the form in which most books are written. It is written out of a “he/she” perspective. The narrator can be omniscient (knows everything happening everywhere) or limited (follows only the thoughts and experiences of one person). Most books are written in the third person limited. This can give a broader view of the events of the story than the first person, but the writer has to be sure to let the readers know what the character is thinking and feeling in a subtle way. This person is usually used by more experienced writers and can be very effective.
"Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts" - Einstein
  





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Sat Sep 14, 2013 6:38 pm
barefootrunner says...



IV) TYPOGRAPHY

i. Bold:

Bold is never used in common literary writing as a device. It can be used to format headings or titles, but rarely, if ever, occurs in the main body of text.
"Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts" - Einstein
  





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Sat Sep 14, 2013 6:40 pm
barefootrunner says...



ii. Italics:

Italics are more common. They can be used …

1.) For emphasis.
I couldn’t believe that he had chosen a yellow bow-tie.
He said what?


2.) Thoughts or telepathy, as in the Inheritance Cycle.
When will it stop? she wondered.
They don’t care about the trees, he realized.


3.) Dreams, flashbacks or alternate realities are often written as blocks of italic text.

4.) Foreign words.
His nom de plume is ScarlettLetter.

5.) For movies, books, newspapers, magazines and ships, though not for song titles—these should be in quotation marks in conventional writing.
When did the HMS Trident leave port?
He was reading The Times with his usual scowl.
"Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts" - Einstein
  





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Sat Sep 14, 2013 6:40 pm
barefootrunner says...



iii. Underline:

Nope, not in a literary work. Like bold, you can use it in titles, but it really has no place in the average literary work.
"Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts" - Einstein
  





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Sat Sep 14, 2013 6:41 pm
barefootrunner says...



iv. All caps:

Sometimes people use caps in their work to denote shouting. This is fine, but must never be overdone. Caps are only very rarely necessary, and are a step above the usual italics. When considering using all caps, ask yourself whether it is really THAT LOUD and whether italics wouldn’t do a better job. Also, remember never to use all caps as a literary title or in general in your posts, because it’s never nice when people shout at you, and it’s harder to read.
"Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts" - Einstein
  





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Sat Sep 14, 2013 6:41 pm
barefootrunner says...



Sources:

http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/commas_intro.htm
http://writing.wisc.edu/Handbook/Dashes.html
http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/576/01/
http://writing.wisc.edu/Handbook/Semicolons.html
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/plurals.htm
http://www.grammarbook.com/punctuation/apostro.asp
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/ ... estion.htm
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/ ... mation.htm
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/ ... tation.htm
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/ ... racket.htm
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/ ... lipsis.htm
http://grammar.about.com/od/punctuation ... etters.htm
http://jadevarden.blogspot.com/2012/05/ ... nd-in.html

*


Remember that different countries and cultures use different conventions. The great style manuals differ on many of the points of punctuation, so nothing is set in stone here. Within a few years we’ll probably find that nobody uses spaces with their ellipses anymore and that we’ve swapped italics and underline. Oh well—let the world turn. Feel free to ask any questions below and I’ll try to answer them :)
"Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts" - Einstein
  








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