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Style Bare


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Style Bare


ATHR

Do not confuse the author with the narrator in a piece of prose — or with the speaker in a poem. 

BEFORE
Peter Check explores the psycho-geography of working-class London by identifying Will's existential crisis with the larger "anthropic situation of the East End, circa 1975" (86). 

BEFORE
Peter Check's first-person narrator, Zoë, explores the psycho-geography of working-class London by identifying Will's existential crisis with the larger "anthropic situation of the East End, circa 1975" (86). 

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AVAB

Avoid making claims or assertions that are either absolutist or too generalizing.

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ACFP

Avoid contractions in formal prose.

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AWKD

The sentence — or a portion of the sentence — reads awkwardly.

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CMPL

Place the comma properly vis-à-vis the quotation marks or other content.

BEFORE
Lizzie Tristam decries the waiter as "fuddled", a black mark against the grand hotel's tradition of "pinpoint service" (21).

AFTER
Lizzie Tristam decries the waiter as "fuddled," a black mark against the grand hotel's tradition of "pinpoint service" (21).

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CMND

Comma needed: insert a comma at this site in the text.

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CMRO

Insert a comma to avoid a run-on sentence.

BEFORE
Its Asian Studies program has produced a Tata Scholar but the so-called student-centered university continues to "disremember" (99) to include the unit in E&G budgeting.  

AFTER
Its Asian Studies program has produced a Tata Scholar, but the so-called student-centered university continues to "disremember" (99) to include the unit in E&G budgeting.  

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CRFY

Clarify to whom — or to what — either you or the speaking voice is referring. 

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NKTH

Shun the so-called naked this by always placing a noun (or noun phrase) immediately after the word this.

BEFORE
This demonstrates Antonia’s knack for transforming blighted real estate into hubs that foster creative activity.

AFTER
This regeneration project demonstrates Antonia’s knack for transforming blighted real estate into hubs that foster creative activity.

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NNPN

Ensure that the pronoun agrees with the noun (or noun phrase) to which it refers.

BEFORE
Assessing the "natural patina" (301) of the garments, Hetty Sorrel frets about society's expectations for what an artist should look like — in particular, how they should dress. 

AFTER
Assessing the "natural patina" (301) of the garments, Hetty Sorrel frets about society's expectations for what an artist should look like — in particular, how she or he should dress. 

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NOCM

No comma needed at this site in the text.

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NWPG

Begin a new paragraph at this site in the text; doing so will allow the reader to follow your arguments more clearly .

NWST

Begin a new sentence at this site in the text; doing so will allow the reader to follow your arguments more clearly .

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PFRD

Proof-read carefully to avoid simple errors.

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PLST

Engineer parallel structure — i.e. the same pattern of words — into a sentence that articulates two or more ideas.

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PRTS

Use the present tense when reporting action that occurs in the focal text.

BEFORE
As The Real Charlotte (1894) opens, Francie Fitzpatrick's aunt and guardian "lay in mountainous repose" (3) on her dining-room sofa. One wonders why that room contains a sofa.

AFTER
As The Real Charlotte (1894) opens, Francie Fitzpatrick's aunt and guardian "l[ies] in mountainous repose" (3) on her dining-room sofa. One wonders why that room contains a sofa.

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PSSV

Avoid passive-voice constructions.

BEFORE
Leona — who is described as “pencil-thin” (129) — informs Pete that the revamped indoor-outdoor lounge opposite Gate C-09 serves "the best skinny cocktails" (132) in Qyÿs.   

AFTER
Leona — who the unidentified, third-person narrator describes as “pencil-thin” (129) — informs Pete that the revamped indoor-outdoor lounge opposite Gate C-09 serves "the best skinny cocktails" (132) in Qyÿs.   

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REPT

Avoid repeating a word or phase within a given sentence (or small unit of text).

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SBVB

Ensure that the conjugated verb agrees with the subject (noun, noun phrase, or pronoun) that it modifies.

BEFORE
After a day of bean-counting at the office, the team have difficulty attaining what Macbeth deems "sore labor's bath" — that is, sleep. 

AFTER
After a day of bean-counting at the office, the team has difficulty attaining what Macbeth deems "sore labor's bath" — that is, sleep. 

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SMTH

Make the phrase, clause, or sentence run as smoothly as possible — perhaps by reordering the syntax, among other strategies. 

BEFORE
Jonah Clarke, preferring the midnight metallic finish, or else the predawn one, wants a Bekah yH — 2020 model year; hybrid; built in the Ash Lawn plant — with 52 mpg and 55 mpg ratings, urban and extra-urban, respectively. 

AFTER
Preferring either the predawn or midnight metallic finish, Jonah Clarke wants a 2020 Bekah yH Hybrid, an Ash Lawn-built motor vehicle whose mpg ratings are 52 urban and 55 extra-urban.

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SCCT

Write is as succinct a manner as possible, editing out unnecessary words. 

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SYWK

Use the verb say sparingly. It is weak in that it lacks specificity. Hundreds of alternative verbs exist!

BEFORE
Channelling Voltaire, the trainee Jesuit, Martin (“Flasher”) Devoy, says, “Crush the infamy!” (319).

AFTER
Channelling Voltaire, the trainee Jesuit, Martin (“Flasher”) Devoy, declares, “Crush the infamy!” (319).

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