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Sunday, October 25, 2009

My Dangling Modifier Collection Is Growing!

Online friend and author Sylvia K. Hamilton sent me some more dangling modifiers, especially funny ones.

They are not all dangline modifiers per se, but they are all good examples of how easily we can get into trouble. It will be good practice to dissect each and then rewrite them so they say what they mean.

Sylvia (AKA Pee Wee) says, "Carolyn, while looking for writers' jokes I came across these. I don't know how good they are but I picked out a few that I liked best. Anyway...I got a kick out of them."

Newspaper Headlines of 1998

Two Sisters Reunited After 18 Years in Checkout Line.
Kids Make Nutritious Snacks
Local High School Dropouts Cut in Half
Drunks Get Nine Months in Violin Case
Would-be Women Priests Appeal to Pope

In a future post I'll try to remember to tell you the story of my cutline (the message that goes under pictures in newspapers) when I was working as a staff writer at the Salt Lake Tribune. It was similar to #2 above. Stay tuned by subscribing to this blog in the window provided on the left.


Sylvia K. Hamilton is the author of The Kahills of Willow Walk and its squel For the Love of Willow Walk. Find them at

Carolyn Howard-Johnson edits, consults and speaks on issues of publishing. Find her The Frugal Editor: Put Your Best Book Forward to Avoid Humiliation and Ensure Success at Learn more about her other authors' aids at, where writers will find lists and other helps on the Resources for Writers page. She blogs on all things publishing (not just editing!) at her Sharing with Writers blog.


Joyce Anthony said...

Good ones, PeeWee!! Carolyn, this is a fun subject!

Sylvia Kaye Hamilton said...

Thanks Carolyn and Joyce too. I get the biggest laugh out of dangling modifiers. They ARE fun. Readiing them tend to make me careful to avoid them in my own writing. And believe me, I've come up with some dillies, quite by accident.

Love your blog, Carolyn.

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