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Grammar Moves Shaping Who You Are



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Grammar Moves: Shaping Who You Are#xA0;helps students understand how the grammatical moves they make reveal their personality traits and present their persona to their readers.#xA0; #xA0; The text#x19;s rhetorical approach emphasizes the transformative power that grammar choices can have on a writer and helps students develop the personality the wish to portray in their writing.#xA0; Writers can use the imperative mood to suggest control, colons to be assertive, parenthesis to keep the conversation real, and even commas to present an organized persona.#xA0; By showing students how seemingly small choices can help them manage the impression they make on readers, Grammar Moves: Shaping Who You Arehelps students become more deliberate writers.#xA0;

Table of Contents





Part 1. You, the Doer


Ch. 1.    Grammar for Being Assertive: The Colon

A Few Basics

Colons... and who you want to be

        Having Your Turn

Try This


Ch. 2.    Grammar for Being Proactive: Active Voice

A Few Basics

Active Voice... and who you want to be

      Living Pro-actively

      Writing and Speaking Pro-actively

      ...Even in the Third Person

Try This


Ch. 3.    Grammar for Being Practical: Prepositions

A Few Basics

Prepositions... and who you want to be

      Prepositions We Owe to Other People

      Those We Owe Ourselves

Try This


Ch. 4.    Grammar for Being In Charge: The Imperative

A Few Basics

Imperatives...and who you want to be


      Building Up to It

      Gentle Imperatives

Try This


Ch. 5.    Grammar for Being Organized: Commas

A Few Basics

Commas... and who you want to be

      Beyond Doing It By Feeling

Try This


Ch. 6.    Grammar for Being Optimistic: “But”

A Few Basics

But... and who you want to be


    Alternatives to “But”

Try This


Part 2. You, the Friend


Ch. 7.    Grammar for Being Empathetic: Modifiers

A Few Basics

Modifiers... and who you want to be

    The Failure to Put Oneself in the Reader’s Place

    Examples–Funny and Unfunny

Try This


Ch. 8.    Grammar for Being Respectful: Apostrophes

A Few Basics

Apostrophes... and who you want to be

        What They’re Good For, Really

Try This


Ch. 9.    Grammar for Being Trusting: Cutting Down on Exclamation Points and Intensifiers

A Few Basics

Exclamation Points, Intensifiers... and who you want to be

      Earning a Listener’s Trust

      Developing Trust in Yourself

Try This


Ch. 10.   Grammar for Being “Real”: Contractions, Parentheses, Etc.

A Few Basics

Contradictions, Parentheses, etc.... and who you want to be

      Five Ways to Create Voice

      A Cautionary Note

Try This


Ch. 11.   Grammar for Being Diplomatic: Semicolons

A Few Basics

Semicolons... and who you want to be

      What We and the Semicolon Have in Common

      A Punctuation Mark for This Age

      Doing Without Thanks

Try This


Ch. 12.   Grammar for Being Generous: Cumulative Sentences

A Few Basics

Periodic and Cumulative Sentences... and who you want to be

      The Generous Writer

      Front-Loading and Back-Loading

Try This


Ch. 13.   Grammar for Being Intimate: Ellipses

A Few Basics

Ellipses... and who you want to be

      Everyday Ellipses

      The Secret to the Bonding Power of a Joke

      Love Above All

Try This


Ch. 14.   Grammar for Being Forgiving: Past Tense

A Few Basics

Past Tense... and who you want to be

      The Problem with the Present Tense

      The Past Tense Alternative

Try This


Ch. 15.   Grammar for Being Expressive: Sentence Length, Etc.

A Few Basics

Sentence Length, Etc.... and who you want to be

      The Musical Effect of Placement

      The Musical Effect of Repetition

      The Musical Effect of Sentence Length

Try This


Part 3. You, the Thinker


Ch. 16.   Grammar for Being Open-Minded: Cross-Outs

A Few Basics

Cross-Outs... and who you want to be

     Normal Everyday Inquiry

     Close-Minded vs. Open-Minded

     The Sound of Crossing Out

Try This


Ch. 17.   Grammar for Being Adaptable: Adverbial Provisos

A Few Basics

Adverbial Provisos... and who you want to be

    “Will” as Straitjacket

    A Way Out

Try This


Ch. 18.   Grammar for Being Capable of Dealing with Complexity: The Cues of Complication

A Few Basics

Cues of Complication... and who you want to be

    Tips for Avoiding Simple-Mindedness

Try This


Ch. 19.   Grammar for Being Well-Mentored: A Special Use of the Present Tense

A Few Basics

A Special Use of the Present Tense... and who you want to be

      Grammatical Time Warp

Try This


Ch. 20.   Grammar for Being Honorable: Quotation Marks

A Few Basics

Quotation Marks... and who you want to be

      What They Call It At School

Try This


Ch. 21.   Grammar for Being Modest: “I”

A Few Basics

Saying “I”... and who you want to be

      “Me, Me, Me”

      Striking a Humble Balance

      The I in Storytelling

      A Final Word on I

Try This


Ch. 22.   Grammar for Being Rebellious: Breaking the Rules

A Few Basics

Breaking Rules... and who you want to be

      Using Grammar to Climb Kohlberg’s Hierarchy


Try This


A Grammarian’s Wish


Appendix A: Uses of the Passive Voice 


Appendix B: MLA Citation Style

Common Types of MLA Citation on a Works Cited Page

The Format of a Works Cited Page

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