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Friday, November 20, 2009

Excerpts from My Coming Avoiding Homonym Booboos

I thought I'd share this entry from my coming booklet:

Great Little Last-Minute Edits for Writers
The Ultimate Frugal Booklet for Avoiding Homonym Booboos Agents and Other Publishing Professionals Hate

aesthetic/esthetic: Dictionaries generally list esthetic as a "variable of aesthetic.” Aesthetic is more closely related to "aesthetics; of beauty; sensitive to art and beauty." When your meaning is more than "having to do with sensation" (Webster's definition of esthetic) use aesthetic instead. Aesthetic relates to the original Greek. Aesthetic is also more commonly used in both the US and Britain. It may also give you extra points in a gatekeeper's subconscious rating system.

all tolled/all told: You and I both heard "told" when we were kids but that's because "told" was a word. When we we were three years old, "tolled" was practically a foreign word. So now we're all grown up, we have to catch up so we can catch that error when we make it. It's "All tolled," meaning "added up." The argument, of course, is "all told" does make some serious sense. It's so easy to make these errors because we don't see some of these terms in writing very often.

I also wanted you to know I'll be on vacation for the next few weeks. Try hard to miss me a bit, OK?

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.
And please tweet to your followers. We all need a little help with editing. (-:

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