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Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Two, Too, and To

The three words two, too, and to stump even experienced writers. Here are a few little tips that may help clarify the meanings and usages of these three homonyms.

Two is always a number, so not often confused with the remaining two words, too and to.

Too is an adverb that can be exchanged for words such as “also”. It implies something extra or more than.

EX: Johnny will help us, too (also).

It is too cold for swimming. (colder temperature than normal for swimming).

It is too icy for the buses today. (Icier than acceptable for safety).

The word to has many meanings.

1) It addresses moving toward something or relating to a position.

EX: I am going to the mountains. (toward a destination).

It is five to seven. (The time is moving toward five o’clock).

Get to the point. (Reach the final destination of the discussion).

2) Demonstrates an intention or a purpose.

EX: I attend school to learn.

We are going to watch our sister at the ballgame.

3) Defines a position.

EX: The store is next to the house. (tells where the store is located in relation to the house).

4) Used prior to a verb to indicate the infinitive.

EX: I would like to clarify the meaning of these words.

Look up the word to in a dictionary, and you will find several definitions. The above are simply a few of them.

Most of the time, if two, representing a number is not the appropriate word, and too, meaning also or extra, does not apply, to is the word you need for grammatical correctness.

Happy writing!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

They Accepted My Work!

Part II - Responsibilities & Renumeration

Once an editor expresses interest in your work, you may be asked to make corrections or changes. It is important to follow up with the revisions on a timely basis. Even though some grammatical or spelling errors may be corrected for you, be sure to check the entire piece for needed corrections.

It is usually after the work is revised and acceptable for publication that a contract is sent. Be sure to read the contract, sign it, and return it to the address indicated.

Payment may be made at the time of sale, but is also sometimes made when the work is published. Just because an article is purchased in May, for example, does not mean it will necessarily appear in the next edition of the magazine. It may be four to six months before your work appears in print.

Not all markets are paying markets. Some smaller publications pay in contribution copies. However, this can be an asset to your writing career because it builds writing credits. This means that the next time you submit something to a magazine, you can tell that editor you were previously published in a former publication. Be sure to give the name of the publication and the edition in which your work appeared.

Once your work appears in print, tell everyone! Post it on your My space page, tell your friends, blog about it. Get your name out there. Again, remember to keep negative comments to yourself, but put the emphasis on the positive. The more you promote yourself and your work, the more skill and confidence you will build as a writer.

Happy writing!
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