‘I’m in favour of ___’ vs. ‘I’m for ___’

Is ‘I’m in favour of’ considered more formal than ‘I’m for’, or are they interchangeable? I want to say something like, ‘Sometimes people abandon their logic /in favour of/ false hope’, but can’t help but feel that using ‘for’ would make the sentence more succinct. Answer As in: Sometimes, people abandon their logic for false … Read more

What is precisely the problem when a non-native English writer lacks ‘natural flow’?

Having read the writing of non-native English speakers on several occasions, it has always struck me how easily I can identify what is ‘wrong’ about a particular sentence without really determining why. For example, in this sentence: You see the man clamp his fists hard, like he is trying to suppress some strong emotions. I … Read more

Multiple kinds of non-plural items in a parallel list

OK, I was recently asked a question by a foreign friend on an English sentence that they created. Mixing and matching all kinds of vegetables, seafood, and meat, some of my newly added dishes are this and that. To me, this sounded awkward. With a parallel list structure, I should be able to do the … Read more

Is there a term for an offset quote that is only quoting the body of the text?

A trend in many magazine-style articles is to take a quote from the body of the article and place it in its own blockquote or other special formatting, then place it somewhere irrelevant in the flow of the document. SOME NON-SEQUITUR NONSENSE Is there a name for this practice? It can occasionally add some context … Read more