Posts By: Christina M. Frey

Christina M. Frey

The Writer’s Toolbox – An Invitation

You’re putting together holiday cards or inviting friends and family to a year-end gathering. You’ve got festive music on the radio, the scent of gingerbread is wafting through the house, and you’re sipping a caffeinated concoction in a red cup. What the heck does grammar have to do with that? As it turns out, quite… Read more »

The Writer’s Toolbox – Fragments, Part II

Sentence fragments are exactly what they sound like: pieces of a sentence. they’re incomplete because they are either missing a major component (a subject or predicate) or because they’re actually dependent clauses, unable to stand on their own without the larger context of an independent, standalone clause (sentence). Here’s a secret, though: sentence fragments may… Read more »

The Writer’s Toolbox – Fragmented, Part I

“Answer in complete sentences,” said your fourth-grade English teacher. Well, of course you will?doesn’t everyone? Not necessarily. Can you pick out the complete sentences here? For sure. The best movie ever. Although I’m too tired to come over. Thinking about the best way to edit my assignment. That moment when you find five errors just… Read more »

The Writer’s Toolbox – It’s the Little Things

The length of a flight from Prague to New York. The construction date of the Sydney Opera House. The name the state hospital used twenty years ago. The number of seats in a particular make and model of jet. What the gay marriage law was in California in 2012. Which direction the Amazon flows. Crazy-picky… Read more »

In Case of Emergency

It’s been drilled into your head since kindergarten. Recognize emergencies. Call for help. don’t interfere. But have you ever thought?really thought?about how you’d respond to a medical emergency in your own home? Here’s a hint: No matter how prepared you are for an emergency, You’re never really prepared for an emergency. But you get an… Read more »

The Writer’s Toolbox – I Have a Spellchecker

“Eye halve a spelling chequer It came with my pea sea…” You’ve seen the humorous poem before, and you get it; spellcheckers are the misfits of the editing world. They miss homophones. They mix up words. Their understanding of grammar is downright laughable. But they’re not entirely useless?and if you write them off, you could… Read more »

The Writer’s Toolbox – Self Editing in Style, Part II

You’re ready to edit your book or paper, and You’re convinced you need a style sheet to ensure everything’s treated consistently throughout the manuscript. You’ve got your Word document?or notebook?all set, and You’re ready to go. But what exactly should you be tracking in your style sheet, and how do you apply it in your… Read more »

The Writer’s Toolbox – A Voice Cries Out

Writing is personal. Sometimes it’s personal in content, like a journal or memoir?and sometimes there are personal aspects, like a character who goes through a painful experience similar to your own. Then there’s the catharsis that can come from getting your frustration out onto paper (or screen!), and the vindication you feel when you turn… Read more »

The Writer’s Toolbox – A Company Affair, Part IV

Over the past few installments we’ve explored the relationship between brand names and the written word. Last week we discussed whether to genericize product names, like Xerox vs. the verb “to xerox” or Google vs. “to google” (or “to Google,” depending on which dictionary you use). This week we take things a step further and… Read more »