What Does the Old Rule “Show, Don’t Tell” Really Mean, Anyway?

What Does the Old Rule “Show, Don’t Tell” Really Mean, Anyway?

You’ve heard it before, most likely from a teacher, an editor, or your agent. But Anton Chekhov said it most eloquently: *Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.* It may seem apparent when Chekhov says it, but sometimes it’s hard to put that advice into practice. There are times when your reader needs to be “told” because brevity is called for. On the other hand, no one wants to read your brain dump on every little matter.

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The Best Places to Find Free Grammar Help Online

The Best Places to Find Free Grammar Help Online

There are dozens of places to find free grammar help online. In this article, we take a look at ten of the best.

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Do You Italicize Book Titles?

Do You Italicize Book Titles?

Back in the day, people taught students to underline the titles of books, magazines, plays, songs, movies, and other titled works. Now, in most instances, you italicize book titles, songs, and other full-length works like movies. In this guide, we'll cover what to italicize and when.

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Are Your Adjectives Powerful?

Are Your Adjectives Powerful?

An adjective is a word that names an attribute of a noun. Some are strong and paint clear, specific pictures of the thing they are describing. Some are weak and vague and don’t tell us much. Let’s start with an example...

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Download Our Free Teacher's Manual Today

Download Our Free Teacher's Manual Today

In this guide, we’ll cover what ProWritingAid is and how you can use it in your classroom to build your students’ skills. You’ll find an overview of the ProWritingAid reports with instructions on how to use them in the classroom, as well as sample exercises that you can use with your students. In the appendix, there’s a worksheet students can use to track their changes during editing, which will help them learn how to improve their writing.

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Take the Homonym/Homophone Challenge!

Take the Homonym/Homophone Challenge!

Hung up on homonyms? Learn the top five most common word confusions and how to be precise in your meaning.

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What are Phonemes, Graphemes, and Digraphs?

What are Phonemes, Graphemes, and Digraphs?

Each sound that you hear in a word is a Phoneme. It’s the smallest unit of sound that makes up a complete word. This is not to be confused with the letter itself; Phonemes are only the sounds made. There are 44 Phonemes in the English language, consisting of 24 consonant sounds and 20 vowel sounds. Think of the different combinations of consonants and vowels (like “ch” or “ea”) that make unique sounds.

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When You Actually Should Use Passive Voice

When You Actually Should Use Passive Voice

There's an exception to every rule and it's no different with passive voice. Here are a few instances where you might actually want to use it.

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Agent Advice Part 2: Line-Editing and Copy-Editing

Agent Advice Part 2: Line-Editing and Copy-Editing

Literary agents are the gatekeepers of the publishing world. Their verdict on a five-page submission can make or break an author’s dreams. It’s critical to ensure your submission catches an agent’s eye and doesn’t immediately get passed upon.

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Agent Advice Part 1: Developmental Editing

Agent Advice Part 1: Developmental Editing

Literary agents are the gatekeepers of the publishing world. Their verdict on a five-page submission can make or break an author’s dreams. It’s critical to ensure your submission catches an agent’s eye and doesn’t immediately get passed upon.

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What Are the Different Types of Verbs?

What Are the Different Types of Verbs?

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Peek Over the Peak with Piqued Interest

Peek Over the Peak with Piqued Interest

The English language is tricky. Words can sound the same but have very different meanings. This makes mastering grammatical rules difficult. One set of confusing words are peek, peak, and pique.

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Changing Passive Voice to Active Voice

Changing Passive Voice to Active Voice

What is the passive voice, anyway? As writers, we know that the passive voice is bad. But why? And if it is so bad, how do we fix it? We take a look at what the passive voice is and a new feature to fix it in ProWritingAid.

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Are You Using Semi-Colons Correctly?

Are You Using Semi-Colons Correctly?

If you’ve ever wondered when it’s appropriate to use a semi-colon, you’re not alone. Let's break down how to use this tricky punctuation mark.

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Top 10 Grammatical Errors You Can Fix

Top 10 Grammatical Errors You Can Fix

Have you ever made any of these 10 grammatical errors before? No worries! Here's how to fix them.

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