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  Tips for Writers by Brad Hyde (April 22, 2007)

Easily Confused Spellings

Here's the last in a series of tips inspired by Warren Clements' column, Word Play, from The Globe and Mail newspaper.

When you have a skill you wish to sharpen then "hone" it, rather than "home" it. However, if you are having trouble finding something, then to "home" in on it would be better!

Why not try a different approach? Then, use the term "a new tack," referring to the practice of changing direction in a sailboat. Don't confuse it with "tact," which is having the sense (and ability) to not say something sensitive to someone.

And, lastly, your children may go through a "phase," but if you are having a lot of trouble with them doing so, then they may "faze" you (startle or disorient).

Simple? Not really. The examples above can be found used incorrectly in newspapers and on on newscasts across the land (according to Clements and many others).

See our most recent tips.

Tips from November 2001 to April 2002

Tips from September 2000 to October 2001.

Tips from January to August 2000
Tips from January to December 1999


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