Write Look Good in Print

Link & Learn

Some paragraphs throughout the course will be marked as examples, activities, required reading, or optional tips

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To access the previous PDF version of the online textbook, click here. Note: The PDF version will not reflect any updates or changes.

Look Good in Print

When you write for business, write correctly. Simple mistakes can embarrass you and cost your company real money. As evidence, read this USA Today article about the million-dollar comma:

Required reading

In Chapter 2 we’ll touch briefly on 22 fundamentals of good writing. We selected these by counting and categorizing the most common mistakes in a large sample of student papers. In other words, our approach is neither comprehensive nor random, but pragmatic. We want to help you avoid the most common pitfalls.


Grammar Rules. Some of the fundamentals are grammatical, reflecting the rules that govern how sentences are constructed in the English language. These rules have fairly definitive right and wrong answers (although grammar rules do evolve; witness the recent acceptance of the singular “they” by some media outlets).


Style Guidelines. Other fundamentals relate to style: preferred constructions that, while not based on grammar rules, represent recommended practice. Many organizations have their own style guides listing particular do’s and don’ts. Always follow your employer’s style guide (if available). For purposes of this course, consider sections 2A–2C your basic in-class style guide. You are responsible for learning and applying the 22 fundamentals contained in these three chapters.

Tip: Each of the 22 fundamentals will be identified as either a grammar rule or style guideline. We don’t expect you to memorize which are which; we simply include this information for those who are curious.

Let’s get started . . .

The link for each title below will open a Google Docs document. Please read through each one and watch the supporting videos.

2A Syntax and Word ChoiceFundamentals 1–9

2B Punctuation PlusFundamentals 10–16

2C VerbsFundamentals 17–22

Proceed to online resources if you need further clarification and practice. Remember, applying these fundamentals is now your responsibility.

Need quick access? Remember this link: bit.ly/mcom320fundamentals

In Conclusion

If you were blessed with an amazing English teacher, this content may come easily. If you weren’t that lucky, you’ll have to work harder.

This may be your last chance to learn to produce strong, clear writing without errors. We’ve done our best to make it relatively painless.

Please let us know.

You’re welcome!

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