Issue For October 6, 2004
Writing Question of the Week
Can anyone tell me the difference between "persons" and "people?" Are they synonymous or is one used instead of another in different situations? Thank you very much. (Anonymous)
This is what I found on p. 487 in /A Dictionary of Modern American Usage/ compiled by Garner: "The traditional distinction--now a pedantic one--is that /people/ is general, and /persons /specific. Thus, one would refer to 300 /people/ who had assembled but to the twelve /persons/ on the jury. /Persons/ has been considered better for small, specific numbers. But twelve /persons/ on the jury seems stuffy to many readers, and most native speakers of AmE would say twelve /people /on the jury. In contexts like that one, /people/ has long been used and is surey the more natural phrasing." hope this helps. Jenny (OWL Tutor)
The OWL Help Nest
Each week we'll publish a request for advice or information. If you wish to contribute a response to the topic, please write to us at email@example.com. Please let us know if you want us to include your name and/or your email address when we publish your response. The following week, we'll publish the best information and advice that we receive in the newsletter. If you have a question for our readers, please send it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last Week's Questions
Question #1 What is the difference between "In the picture is a boy", "In the picture there is a boy", "A boy is in the picture", and "There is a boy in the picture"? Which one is better? Thanks!
Answer: There is a boy in the picture or A boy is in the picture whatever option you choose they are all correct.It depends on the emphasis.Remember that whatever you mention first,when writing,is the most important element in your sentence. and would receive more relevance.There are many ways of giving emphasis.another option would be "It is a boy that is in the picture." Dierdre from yahoo.com.ar
Question #2 I am writing a story and have some questions regarding quotation marks: Where there is a lengthy dialog in a story, is it correct to put quotation marks only at the beginning and the end of the dialog? Or does every new sentence have to start and end with quotations? Also, what if that lengthy dialog has an action ("he said as he ran his fingers through his hair." ) right in the middle of the lengthy dialog?
Do you start the new sentence with quotation marks or continue letting the person speak until they are finished, then put the quotations?
Answer: As a fiction writer, I would suggest to this writer that a lengthy dialogue is really a monologue and can get very tedious for the reader. Similar to lengthy narrative, dialogue needs to be broken up, even if it is only as in:
"You never listen to anything I tell you," he said, running his fingers through his hair. "You shut down every time I try to talk to you and it's no wonder the kids are running loose in the neighborhood. Next, we'll be bailing them out of jail and shipping them off to boot camp..." Susan from Hershey, PA.
What's Happening on OWL
- OWL Eye on...How would you organize the OWL? A major part of our ongoing redesign involves organizing the materials on OWL so they are much easier to find. If you have any suggestions regarding organization and navigation, please send them along to Karl at email@example.com.
- OWL Eye on...Multimedia content In the coming months, we'll be designing and adding more multimedia content to our OWL. We'd like to get your feedback about what kinds of multimedia content would be most useful to you as a user of our website. Send your multimedia ideas to Chris at firstname.lastname@example.org
What's Happening in the Writing Lab
- OWL Eye on...Fall Schedule The Writing Lab at Purdue University will be available during its
regular hours. It offers one-on-one tutorials, in-lab and in-class
workshops, lab tours, conversation groups, and a multitude of other
Writing Lab resources every weekday.
- Fall 2004 Writing Lab Hours:
- Tutoring Hours: M-Th 9-4; F 9-1
- ESL Conversation Groups: M 1:30-2:30, Tu/Th: 4:30-5:30, W: 11:00-noon, F: 11:30-12:30
- OWL Eye on...In-Lab Workshops for October
- Oct 13: Conquering the comma with Meg at 3:30pm
- Oct 19: Conductin an interview by Oana at 12:30pm
- Oct 20: Resumes (traditional) with the BWCs at 3:30pm
- Oct 26: Cover letters with Laura at 12:30pm
- Oct 27: Resumes (scannable) with the BWCs at 3:30pm
Thanks for reading our newsletter. You can email us at any time at email@example.com. You can also email the OWL coordinator, Chris Berry, at firstname.lastname@example.org and the webmaster, Karl Stolley, at email@example.com. (Chris and Karl take turns writing the newsletter.)This issue you have attempted to reach could not be found. Please use the navigation to the left to locate the issue you are attempting to open. Thank you!