Simon and Schuster Handbook for Writers / Edition 7

Simon and Schuster Handbook for Writers / Edition 7

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Simon and Schuster Handbook for Writers / Edition 7

Quick Find Road Map


If you sometimes feel a bit unsure as you write, try using the QUICK FIND ROADMAP to get you back on track to effective writing. The roadmap reflects some of the most common writing errors that frustrate writers.  To find the information you need, choose the item that best describes the issue you are facing and then turn to the pages referenced.



Write complete sentences instead of fragments.

Join independent clauses correctly by avoiding comma splices and run-ons.

Match grammatical forms within sentences to avoid shifts and keep sentences clear.

Make sentences with introductory phrases and with modifiers clear.

Know when to use its or it's.



Match subjects and verbs in number and person.

Match pronouns to the word or words they refer to.

Use correct verb endings.

Choose verbs that correctly express time in tense and form.

Describe relationships with the correct prepositions for time and place.



Use commas after introductoryelements.

Use commas in compound sentences.

Use commas to set off nonrestrictive elements.

Do not use commas to set off restrictive elements.

Use commas with a series of three or more elements that share the same grammatical form.

Use apostrophes correctly.



Choose the best words for your meaning.

Make your writing to the point and concise.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780131604391
Publisher: Pearson
Publication date: 03/04/2004
Edition description: Older Edition

Table of Contents

PART I: The Writing Process

Chapter 1     Thinking Like a Writer    

1a What is the current scene for writers?

1b What are the major purposes for writing?

1c What does "audience" mean for writing?

1d What is "tone" in writing?

1e What does "sources for writing" mean?

1f  What resources can help me with writing?

1g How do computers shape the writing process?

1h What forms of writings do computers enable?


Chapter 2     Planning, Shaping, Drafting, and Revising     

2a What is the writing process?

2b What terms describe different kinds of writing?

2c What is a "writing situation?"

2d How can I think through a writing topic?

2e What can I do if no ideas occur to me?

2f  How do I use an idea log and a journal?

2g What is freewriting?

2h What is brainstorming?

2i  What are the "journalist’s questions"?

2j  What ismapping?

2k How can "talking it over" help?

2l  How can an Internet search help?

2m How can Incubation help me?

2n How can shaping help me?

2o How can looking for "levels of generality" help me?

2p How can a subject tree help me?

2q What is a thesis statement?

2r  What is outlining?

2s What can help me write a first draft?

2t  How can I overcome writer's block?

2u How do I revise?

2v How do I edit?

2w How do I proofread?

2x What is collaborative writing?

2y A student essay in three drafts  


Chapter 3     Writing Paragraphs

3a What is a paragraph?

3b How can I write effective introductory paragraphs?

3c What are body paragraphs?

3d How can I create unity in paragraphs?

3e How can topic sentences create paragraph unity?

3f  How can I develop my body paragraphs?

3g How can I write coherent paragraphs?

3h How can I arrange a paragraph?

3i  How can rhetorical strategies help me write paragraphs?

3j  What is a transitional paragraph?

3k What are effective concluding paragraphs?


Chapter 4     Thinking, Reading, and Writing Critically

4a What is critical thinking?

4b How do I engage in critical thinking?

4c What is the reading process?

4d How do I engage in critical reading?

4e How do I tell the difference between summary and synthesis?

4f  How do I write a critical response?

4g How do I assess evidence critically?

4h How do I assess cause and effect critically?

4i  How do I assess reasoning processes critically?

4j  How can I recognize and avoid logical fallacies?


Chapter 5     Writing Argument    

5a What is a written argument?

5b How do I choose a topic for an argument?

5c How do I develop a claim and a thesis statement for my argument?

5d Why might I need to define key terms?

5e What is the structure of a classical argument?

5f  How do I support my argument?

5g What types of appeals can provide support?

5h What is the Toulmin model for argument?

5i  What part does audience play in my argument?

5j  How can Rogerian argument help me reach opposing audiences?

5k What is a reasonable tone in an argument?

5l  How do I handle opposing arguments?

5m How did one student draft and revise her argument essay?

5n  Final draft of a student's argument essay in MLA style


Chapter 6     Critically Analyzing Images and Using Them

6a How can I view images with a critical eye?

6b How can images persuade?

6c How can I analyze words combined with images?

6d What can images add to my writing?



PART II: Understanding Grammar and Writing Correct Sentences

Chapter 7     Parts of Speech and Sentence Structures

Parts of Speech

7a Why learn the parts of speech?

7b What is a noun?

7c What is a pronoun?

7d What is a verb?

7e What is a verbal?

7f  What is an adjective?

7g What is an adverb?

7h What is a preposition?

7i  What is a conjunction?

7j  What is an Interjection?

Sentence Structures

7k How is a sentence defined?

7l   What are a subject and a predicate in a sentence?

7m What are direct and indirect objects?

7n  What are complements, modifiers, and appositives?

7o  What is a phrase?

7p  What is a clause?

7q  What are the four sentence types?


Chapter 8     Verbs

8a What do verbs do?

Verb Forms

8b What are the forms of the main verbs?

8c What is the -s, or -es, form of a verb?

8d What is the difference between regular and irregular verbs?

8e What are auxiliary verbs?

8f  What are Intransitive and transitive verbs?

Verb Tense

8g What is verb tense?

8h How do I use the simple present tense?

8i  How do I form and use the perfect tenses?

8j  How do I form and use progressive forms?

8k How do I use tense sequences accurately?


8l  What is "mood" in verbs? 

8m What are subjunctive forms?


8n What is "voice" in verbs?

8o How do I write in the active, not passive, voice?

8p What are proper uses of the passive voice?


Chapter 9     Pronoun Case and Reference

Pronoun Case

9a What does "case" mean?

9b What are personal pronouns?

9c How do pronouns work in case?

9d Which case is correct when and  connects pronouns?

9e How do I match cases with appositives?

9f  How does case work after linking verbs?

9g When should I use who, whoever, whom and whomever?

9h What pronoun case comes after than or as?

9i  How do pronouns work before infinitives?

9j  How do pronouns work with -ing  words?

9k What case should I use for -self  pronouns?

Pronoun Reference

9l  What is pronoun reference?

9m What makes pronoun reference clear?

9n How can I avoid unclear pronoun reference?

9o How do pronouns work with it, that, this, and which?

9p How do I use they and it  precisely?

9q How do I use it  to suit the situation?

9r  When should I use you  for direct address?

9s When should I use that, which,and who?


Chapter 10  Agreement

10a What is agreement?

Subject-Verb Agreement

10b What is subject-verb agreement?

10c Why is a final -s  or -es  in a subject or verb so important?

10d Can I ignore words between a subject and its verb?

10e How do verbs work when subjects are connected by and?

10f  How do verbs work with each  and every?

10g How do verbs work when subjects are connected by or?

10h How do verbs work with Inverted word order?

10i  How do verbs work with Indefinite pronouns?

10j  How do verbs work with collective nouns?

10k Why does the linking verb agree with the subject, not the subject complement?

10l  What verbs agree with who, which,and that?

10m How do verbs work with amounts, fields of study, and other special nouns?

10n  How do verbs work with titles, company names, and words as themselves?

Pronoun-Antecedent agreement

10o What is pronoun-antecedent agreement?

10p How do pronouns work when and  connects antecedents?

10q How do pronouns work when or  connects antecedents?

10r How do pronouns work when antecedents are indefinite pronouns?

10s How do I use nonsexist pronouns?

10t  How do pronouns work when antecedents are collective nouns?


Chapter 11     Adjectives and Adverbs

11a What are the differences between adjectives and adverbs?

11b When should I use adverbs - not adjectives - as modifiers?

11c What is wrong with double negatives?

11d Do adjectives or adverbs come after linking verbs?

11e What are comparative and superlative forms?

11f Why avoid a long string of nouns as modifiers?


Chapter 12     Sentence Fragments

12a What is a sentence fragment?

12b How can I recognize a sentence fragment?

12c What are major ways of correcting fragments?

12d How can I fix a fragment that is part of a compound predicate?

12e What are the two special fragment problems?

12f  How can I recognize intentional fragments?


Chapter 13     Comma Splices and Run-on Sentences

13a What are comma splices and run-on sentences?

13b How can I recognize comma splices and run-on sentences?

13c How can I correct comma splices and run-on sentences?

13d How can I correctly use a conjunctive adverb or other transitional expression between independent clauses?


Chapter 14     Misplaced and Dangling Modifiers

Misplaced Modifiers

14a What is a misplaced modifier?

14b How can I avoid split infinitives?

14c How can I avoid other splits in my sentences?

Dangling Modifiers

14d How can I avoid dangling modifiers?

14e How can I proofread successfully for misplaced and dangling modifiers?


Chapter 15     Shifting and Mixed Sentences

Shifting Sentences

15a What is a shifting sentence?

15b How can I avoid shifts in person and number?

15c How can I avoid shifts in subject and voice?

15d How can I avoid shifts in tense and mood?

15e How can I avoid shifts between Indirect and direct discourse?

Mixed Sentences

15f  What is a mixed sentence?

15g How can I correct a mixed sentence due to faulty predication?

15h What are correct elliptical constructions?

15i  What are correct comparisons?

15j  How can I proofread successfully for little words I forget to use?



PART III: Writing Effectively 

Chapter 16     Conciseness

16a What is conciseness?

16b What common expressions are not concise?

16c What sentence structures usually work against conciseness?

16d How else can I revise for conciseness?

16e How do verbs affect conciseness?

Chapter 17     Coordination and Subordination 


17a What is coordination of sentences?

17b What is the structure of a coordinate sentence?

17c What meaning does each coordinating conjunction convey?

17d How can I avoid misusing coordination?


17e What is subordination of sentences?

17f  What is the structure of a subordinate sentence?

17g What meaning does each subordinating conjunction convey?

17h How can I avoid misusing subordination?

17i  How can I effectively use coordination and subordination together?


Chapter 18     Parallelism

18a What is parallelism?

18b What is a balanced sentence?

18c How do words, phrases, and clauses work in parallel form?

18d How does parallelism deliver impact?

18e How can I avoid faulty parallelism?

18f  How does parallelism work in outlines and lists?


Chapter 19     Variety and Emphasis

19a What are variety and emphasis in writing?

19b How do different sentence lengths create variety and emphasis?

19c How do occasional questions, commands, or exclamations create variety and emphasis?

19d How can modifiers create variety and emphasis?

19e How does repetition affect variety and emphasis?

19f  How else can I create variety and emphasis?


Chapter 20     Usage Glossary


Chapter 21     The Impact of Words

21a What is American English?

21b Whate are levels of formality in language?

21c What is edited American English?

21d What is figurative language?

21e How can using exact diction enhance my writing?

21f  How can using specific words enhance my writing?

21g What is gender-neutral language?

21h What other types of language to I want to avoid'Language to avoid

21i  What is regional language?

21j  What are clichés?

21k When is jargon unnecessary?

21l  What are euphemisms?

21m what is bureaucratic language?

Chapter 22     Spelling

22a What makes a good speller?

22b How can I proofread for errors in spelling and hypen use?

22c How are plurals spelled?

22d SHow are suffixes spelled?

22e What is the ie, ei  rule?

22f  How are homonyms and other frequently confused words spelled?

22g What are compound words?



PART IV: Using Punctuation and Mechanics

Chapter 23     Periods, Question Marks, and Exclamation Points


23a When does a period end a sentence?

23b How do I use periods with abbreviations?

Question Marks

23c When do I use a question mark?

23d When can I use a question mark in parentheses?

Exclamation Points

23e When do I use an exclamation point?

23f  What is considered overuse of exclamation points?


Chapter 24     Commas

24a What is the role of the comma?

24b How do commas work with coordinating conjunctions?

24c How do commas work with introductory clauses, phrases, and words?

24d How do commas work with items in a series?

24e How do commas work with coordinate adjectives?

24f  How do commas work with nonrestrictive elements?

24g How do commas set off parenthetical expressions, contrasts, words of direct address, and tag sentences?

24h How do commas work with quoted words?

24i  How do commas work in dates, names, addresses, correspondence, and numbers?

24j  How do commas clarify meaning?

24k How can I avoid misusing commas?

24l  How can I avoid comma errors?


Chapter 25     Semicolons    

25a What are the uses of a semicolon?

25b When can I use a semicolon, instead of a period, between independent clauses?

25c When else can I use a semicolon between independent clauses?

25d How do semicolons work with coordinating conjunctions?

25e When should I use semicolons between items in a series?

25f  How do I avoid misusing the semicolon?

Chapter 26     Colons

26a What are the uses of a colon?

26b When can a colon introduce a list, an appositive, or a quotation?

26c When can I use a colon between two Independent clauses?

26d What standard formats require a colon?

26e When is a colon wrong?


Chapter 27     Apostrophes

27a What is the role of the apostrophe?

27b How do I use an apostrophe to show a possessive noun?

27c How do I use an apostrophe with possessive pronouns?

27d How do I use an apostrophe with contractions?

27e How do I use an apostrophe with possessive Indefinite pronouns?

27f  How do I form the plural of miscellaneous elements?

27g When is an apostrophe wrong?


Chapter 28     Quotation Marks

28a What is the role of quotation marks?

28b How do I use quotation marks with short direct quotations?

28c Are quotation marks usd with long quotations?

28d How do I use quotation marks for quotations within quotations?

28e How do I use quotation marks for quotations of poetry and dialogue?

28f  How do I use quotation marks with titles of short works?

28g How do I use quotation marks for words used as words?

28h How do I use quotation marks with  other punctuation?

28i  When are quotation marks wrong?


Chapter 29     Other Punctuation Marks


29a When can I use a dash in my writing?


29b When can I use parentheses in my writing?


29c When do I need to use brackets in my writing?

Ellipsis points

29d How do I use ellipsis points in my writing?


29e When can I use a slash in my writing?


29f When do I need a hyphen in my writing?

29g When do I use a hyphen at the end of a line?

29h How do I use a hyphen with prefixes and suffixes?

29i  How do I use hyphens with compound words?


Chapter 30     Capitals, Italics, Abbreviations, and Numbers


30a When do I capitalize a "first" word?

30b When do I use capitals with listed items?

30c When do I use capitals with sentences in parentheses?

30d When do I use capitals with quotations?

30e When do I capitalize nouns and adjectives?


30f  What are iitalics?

30g How do I choose between using italics and quotation marks?

30h Can I use italics for special emphasis?


30i  What are standard practices for using abbreviations?

30j  How do I use abbreviations with months, time, eras, and symbols?

30k How do I use abbreviations for other elements?

30l  When can I use etc.?


30m When do I use spelled-out numbers?

30n What are standard practices for writing numbers?

30o How do I use hyphens with spelled-out numbers?



PART V: Writing Research

Chapter 31     Research Writing as a Process

31a What is research writing?

31b How do I schedule a research project?

31c What is a research log?

31d How do I choose and narrow a research topic?

31e What is a research question?

31f  How do I determine the purpose and audience for my research paper?

31g What practical steps can help me work efficiently?

31h What documentation style should I use?

31i  What is a working bibliography?

31j. What is an annotated bibliography?

31k How do I take content notes?

31l  How do I draft a thesis statement for a research paper?

31m How do I outline a research paper?

31n How do I draft a research paper?

31o How do I revise a research paper?


Chapter 32     Finding and Evaluating Sources

32a What is a source?

32b What is a search strategy?

32c What is field research?

32d How do I find library-based sources?

32e How do I use reference works?

32f  How do I find government documents?

32g What if my library doesn't have a source I need?

32h How do I evaluate sources?

32i  What should I know about searching the Web?

32j  How do I search the Web?

32k How do I evaluating Web sources?


Chapter 33     Using Sources and Avoiding Plagiarism

33a How do I use sources well?

33b What is plagiarism?

33c How do I avoid plagiarism?

33d How do I work with Internet sources to avoid plagiarism?

33e Why don't I have to document?

33f  What must I document?

33g How can I effectively integrate sources into my writing?

33h How can I use quotations effectively?

33i  How can I write good paraphrases?

33j  How can I write good summaries?

33k Which verbs can help me weave source material into my sentences?


Chapter 34     MLA Documentation with Case Study

34a What is MLA style?

34b What is MLA in-text parenthetical documentation?

34c What are MLA guidelines for parenthetical documentation?

34d What are MLA guidelines for a Works Cited list?

34e A student's MLA-style research paper


Chapter 35     APA Documentation with Case Study

35a What is APA documentation style?

35b What are APA parenthetical in-text citations?

35c What are APA guidelines for in-text citations?

35d What are APA guidelines for writing an abstract?

35e What are APA guidelines for content notes?

35f  What are APA guidelines for a References list?

35g What are APA format guidelines for research papers?

35h A student's APA-style research paper


Chapter 36     CM, CSE, and COS Documentation

CM-style Documentation

36a What is CM-style documentation?

36b What are CM guidelines for bibliographic notes?

CSE-style Documentation

36c What is CSE-style documentation?

36d What are CSE guidelines for sources on a list of references?



PART VI: Writing Across the Curriculumand Beyond

Chapter 37     Comparing the Disciplines

37a What is writing across the curriculum?

37b What are primary research and secondary research in the disciplines?

37c What can help me write assignments in various disciplines?

37d How do I use documentation in the disciplines?


Chapter 38     Writing About the Humanities and Literature

38a What are the humanities?

38b What types of sources do I use in the humanities?

38c What types of papers do I write in the humanities?

38d Which documentation style do I use to write about the humanities?

38e What is literature?

38f  Why write about literature?

38g What general strategies can help me write about literature?

38h How do I write different types of papers about literature?

38i  What special rules apply to writing about literature?

38j  Sample student essays


Chapter 39     Writing in the Social Sciences and Natural Sciences

Social Sciences

39a What are the social sciences?

39b What kinds of sources do I use in the social sciences?

39c What are writing purposes and practices in the social sciences?

39d What are different types of papers in the social sciences?

39e What documentation style should I use in the social sciences?

Natural Sciences

39e What are the natural sciences?

39f  What are writing purposes and practices in the natural sciences?

39g What documentation style should I use in the natural sciences?

39h How do I write different types of papers in the natural sciences?


Chapter 40     Business and Public Writing

Business Writing

40a Who writes in the workplace?

40b What are typical policies concerning business writing?

40c What are legal considerations concerning business writing?

40d What are special considerations concerning business e-mail?

40e How do I format and write memo?

40f  How do I write business letters?

40g How do I write a resume?

40h How do I write a job application letter?

40i How do I write a business proposal?

40j How do I prepare an informal meeting agenda?

40k How do I write informal meeting minutes if I'm a new employee?

40l  What is public writing?

40m How do I write reports for the public?

40n How do I write letters to my community or its officials?

40o What other types of public writing exist?

40p What is a blog?

Chapter 41    Making Oral Presentations and Using Multimedia

41a What are oral presentations?

41b How does my purpose focus my presentation?

41c How do I adapt my message to my listening audience?

41d How do I organize my presentation?

41e How do I research and write a presentation?

41f  How do I incorporate multimedia into my oral presentation?

41g How do I plan for multimedia in my presentation?

41h What presentation styles can I use?

41i  How do I use my voice effectively?

41j  How do I use nonverbal communication?

41k What can I do to practice for my oral presentation?

41l  How do I overcome stage fright?

41m How do I make a collaborative presentation?


Chapter 42     Document and Visual Design

42a What is visual design?

42b What are basic principles of design?

42c How do I design with text?

42d How do I use headings?

42e How do I use borders?

42f  How should I incorporate graphics?

42g What is page layout?


Chapter 43     Writing for the Web

43a What is writing for the Web?

43b What is the Web writing process?

43c How do I plan content for my Web site?

43d How do I create a structure for my Web site?

43e How do I design Web pages?

43f  How do I use Web writing software?

43g How do I incorporate images into Web pages?

43h What precautions do I need to take while using images I find?

43i  How do I edit my page and test usability?

43j  How do I display my Web page?

43k How do I maintain my Web site?

43l  How else can I publish on the Web?



PART VII: Writing When English Is a Second Language

Chapter 44     Multilingual Students Writing Essays in US Colleges

44a How is writing taught in US colleges?

44b How does my past writing experience affect my writing in English?

44c How can I know what my instructor expects in my writing?

44d How should I organize my writing?

44e How can I use other writers’ work to improve my writing?

44f  What kind of dictionary should I use?

44g What should I do with my classmates’ and instructor’s comments?

44h Where can I find strategies for editing my work?

44i  How can I set long-term goals for my writing?


Chapter 45     Handling Sentence-Level Issues in English

45a How can I improve the grammar and vocabulary in my writing?

45b How can I improve my sentence structure?

45c How can I improve my word choice (vocabulary)?

45d How can I find and correct errors in my own writing?

45e How can I correct verb form (tense) errors in my writing?

45f  How can I correct my errors in subject-verb agreement?

45g How can I correct my singular/plural errors?

45h How can I correct my preposition errors?

45i  What other kinds of errors might I make?

45j  How can I keep track of my most common errors?

45k How can I improve my proofreading skills?


Chapter 46     Singulars and Plurals

46a What are count and noncount nouns?

46b How do I use determiners with singular and plural nouns?

46c How do I use one of, nouns as adjectives, and states  in names or titles?

46d How do I use nouns with irregular plurals?


Chapter 47     Articles

47a How do I use a, an, or the  with singular count nouns?

47b How do I use articles with plural nouns and with noncount nouns?

47c How do I use the  with proper nouns and with gerunds?


Chapter 48     Word Order

48a How do I understand standard and inverted word order in sentences?

48b How can I understand the placement of adjectives?

48c How can I understand the placement of adverbs?


Chapter 49     Prepositions

49a How can I recognize prepositions?

49b How do I use prepositions with expressions of time and place?

49c How do I use prepositions in phrasal verbs?

49d How do I use prepositions with past participles?

49e How do I use prepositions in expressions?


Chapter 50     Gerunds, Infinitives, and Participles

50a How can I use gerunds and infinitives as subjects?

50b When do I use a gerund, not an infinitive, as an object?

50c When do I use an infinitive, not a gerund, as an object?

50d How does meaning change when certain verbs are followed by a gerund or an infinitive?

50e Why is the meaning unchanged whether a gerund or an infinitive follows sense verbs?

50f  How do I choose between -ing  and -ed  forms for adjectives?


Chapter 51     Modal Auxiliary Verbs

51a How do I convey ability, necessity, advisability, possibility, and probability with modals?

51b How do I convey preferences, plans, and past habits with modals?

51c How can I recognize modals in the passive voice?


Terms Glossary

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