Around 2:30 of the first afternoon of my two-day Business Writing and Grammar class the participants start engaging with extra exuberance and interaction. It’s happened this year in Sunnyvale, San Francisco, Oakland, San Jose and Sacramento!
I’m thinking it must be the afternoon topics:
Quote marks are huge! We have rousing discussions over where to put the quotes—before or after the punctuation mark at the end of the sentence?
Using figures (the 21st) or spelling out numbers (the twenty-first) is another thriller. Associated Press Style says use figures. Chicago Style says spell them out. I think one person forgave their boss today after realizing their boss is a Chicago Style girl!
And did you know that the “15 Items or Less” sign over the express line at the store is incorrect? Less is for things you don’t specifically count (as in: There seem to be less people here this year). Fewer is used for specific amounts (as in: There are 23 fewer people here this year).
My favorite today was about using one or two spaces between sentences. I was a two-spacer for years after someone yelled at me. Now I’ve reverted back to being a one-spacer. It’s another Chicago vs. Associated Press debate.
If you’d told me when I was back in school that I would be teaching Business Writing and Grammar I would have fervently ridiculed the idea. Now I love it.
What occupationally pleasant surprise have you experienced, or would like to experience during your career?
Please email and let me know.