Start journaling your heart out today. Have your very own Journaling Kit™ shipped to your doorstep...FREE!

Home
Articles
Columns
E-books
ewritersplace.com Workshops
Free Course
Support Us
Founded April 2000. A Writer's Digest Magazine 101 best Web sites for writers (2001 & 2003)
Book
The Plot Thickens: 8 Ways to Bring Fiction to Life by Noah Lukeman
Product
Write Your Own E-book in 7 Days
Market
ChristianWeek
HELP FOR WRITERS

Buy a novel by Lucille Bellucci at Amazon.com and receive these .pdf bonuses:

  • 17 Ways to Make Amazon Your River of Gold
  • Make Money with Radio
  • Success Bound
  • Book Promotion: NOT for Sissies
  • Harvey Mackay Rolodex
  • Top 20 Talk Radio Topics
  • Harrison Bonus
  • Million Dollar Rolodex

    E-mail Lucille at lucil95783 AT aol DOT com to claim your bonuses.
  • Write Any Book in 28 Days... Or Less!
    Write Any Book in 28 Days... Or Less! New course reveals fresh secrets. Click here to learn more.



    The Secret Behind Creativity REVEALED! It's all in the brainwaves. Find out here!

    EasyEbookPro

    ScatterMall.com Books

    Click here to advertise with us for 2 whole months for only $35!





    Home Columns

    I Don't Need No Stinkin' Double Negatives

    A couple of years ago, a teen flick came out -- Can't Hardly Wait -- that starred Jennifer Love Hewitt and Ethan Embry.

    While the film was amusing, pulled all the right strings and made teeny-boppers cheer on, its title is a case of bad grammar.

    Yup, saying, "I can't hardly wait" is bad grammar.

    Why?

    Because it's a double negative.

    Consider this sentence: "I don't want no sympathy from you."

    Now, let's assume that the person who said the above statement really doesn't want any sympathy. But the sentence implies that what the person doesn't want is no sympathy -- which means, he or she wants sympathy. However which way you look at the sentence, it is grammatically incorrect.

    If the person doesn't want any sympathy, he/she should say it either:

    I don't want sympathy from you.

    OR

    I want no sympathy from you.


    The subtle double negatives

    Writers and speakers who always strive to write or speak correct English have less problem on double negatives. However, some words used in a negative sense are not recognized as negatives right away. They are sometimes combined with another negative and form a subtle double negative.

    Here is a list of these subtle negatives:

    • seldom
    • but (used as "only">
    • just
    • merely
    • barely
    • hardly
    • except
    • only
    • scarcely
    • neither
    • ever
    • rarely
    • nothing
    • nowhere


    And here are examples of the use of double negatives:

    1. Bad grammar: He can't hardly wait for his present to arrive.
      Good grammar: He can hardly wait for his present to arrive.

    2. Bad grammar: They didn't hardly have enough food left.
      Good grammar: They hardly have enough food left.

    3. Bad grammar: She isn't but a homeless little girl.
      Good grammar: She is but a homeless little girl.

    4. Bad grammar: They seldom ever visit us.
      Good grammar: They seldom visit us.

    5. Bad grammar: Because of illness, he just merely weighs one hundred and ten pounds.
      Good grammar: Because of his illness, he weighs merely one hundred and ten pounds.

    Writing activity

    Ok, now it's your turn to transform sentences with double negatives into grammatically correct sentences:

    1. You aren't barely old enough to live on your own.
    2. Why can't you hardly wait for your parents to pick you up?
    3. She was so disappointed because she couldn't go neither.
    4. My father had to sell our car because he didn't scarcely have enough money anymore.
    5. I have so much to do that I haven't ever got time to rest.
    6. You aren't but a minority.
    7. She just merely recalled how poor they used to be.
    8. The new accountant hasn't worked here except three months.
    9. The blanket didn't barely protect their shivering bodies.
    10. Her daughters seldom ever visit her at the hospital.

    Copyright © 2001 Shery Ma Belle Arrieta-Russ

    Shery Ma Belle Arrieta-Russ creates and teaches free e-mail courses for writers at WritingBliss.com. Sign up for a class today.

    The Authentic Self: Journaling Your Joys, Griefs and Everything in Between by Shery Russ



    WEEKLY WRITES: 52 Weeks of Writing Bliss! Kick start your imagination, ignite your creativity, and begin your journey towards becoming an outstanding writer.

    Grab a copy of WEEKLY WRITES: 52 Weeks of Writing Bliss! from Amazon.com and receive 2 free e-books to encourage and nurture the writer in you. You'll also receive Write Memories, a journaling workbook available for free only to WEEKLY WRITES book owners. And finally, as a WEEKLY WRITES book owner, you'll have free access to e-mail courses such as JOYFUL WRITES: Celebrate Your Life through Writing

    For excerpts, reviews and what you need to do to receive the 2 free e-books, Write Memories and sign up for free e-mail courses, just head on to the Weekly Writes Book Official Site. (Clicking on the link will open a new window.)

    FOR JOURNALERS

    The Journaling Life: 21 Types of Journals You Can Create to Express Yourself and Record Pieces of Your Life

    The Authentic Self: Journaling Your Joys, Griefs and Everything in Between

    Journaling Kit - Four Journaling Books to help you put your life and memories on paper

    SEARCH
    Google

    The Web
    This Site

    COURSES FOR WRITERS
    JOYFUL WRITES
    Celebrate Your Life through Writing

    INNER JOURNEY
    Creative Nurturing of the Writer Within

    LIFEWRITES
    6 Approaches to Journaling

    CREATIVITY ALLEY
    21 Ways to Jumpstart Your Muse

    WORDS, SWALLOW ME
    Imagery in Writing

    WRITING CHANNELS

    Children's Writing
    Freelance Writing
    Poetry
    Science Fiction & Fantasy
    Technical Writing

    BOOKS FOR WRITERS

    The Frugal Book Promoter: How to Do What Your Publishers Won't by Carolyn Howard-Johnson

    WEEKLY WRITES: 52 Weeks of Writing Bliss! by Shery Ma Belle Arrieta-Russ




    Home | Articles | Columns | Workshops | E-books | Free Course | Quotes | E-zines | Top Fives | Support Us
    © Copyright 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005 Shery Ma Belle Arrieta-Russ & The e-Writer's Place.
    Materials appearing in this Web site are owned and copyrighted by their respective authors and/or writers. Please read our Privacy Policy and TOS. No part of this website may be reproduced without consent from its owner. Original site design by Shery Russ. Hosting & maintenance by Hosting4Writers.com.
    WriteSparks! Lite free software for writers
    Our sister sites: WriteSparks.com | WeeklyWrites.com | WritingBliss.com | JournalSparks.com | CreativeWritingPrompts.com | BooksAboutWriting.com | WritersOnThe.net | Hosting4Writers.com | Writers Web Designs | blog.forwriters.org | Aspiring Authors | ScatterMall.com Books | DailyWrites.com | EbookPizzazz.com | EmailWorkshopsHowTo.com | Writing-Portal.com | iMusePub.com | WritersMEMO.com