About Marcia Riefer Johnston

Author of "Word Up! How to Write Powerful Sentences and Paragraphs (And Everything You Build from Them)"

Commas around Appositives—When and Why?

When you wonder whether to put commas around an appositive, imagine those commas as greased skids causing the appositive to lose its grip on the adjacent words and slide out of sight. Does the remaining sentence still make sense? If so, use those slippery commas. If not, don’t.

Continue reading

It’s NaNonFiWriMo (National Nonfiction Writing Month)

Thanks to writing coach Nina Amir, founder of National Nonfiction Writing Month (NaNonFiWriMo), November now beckons to writers of nonfiction, too.

Continue reading

What a (Noun) Cluster

Noun clusters can shut down your comprehension even if you understand each word. You may stop and reread. You may draw an incorrect conclusion. You may skip over the words. Or you may do the last thing the writer wanted you to do: move on to someone else’s words. Want some noun-cluster-busting tips for your writing? Read this.

Continue reading

Word Up! Gets Amazon Review #100

Today “Word Up!” received its 100th review on Amazon. The more reviews a book has, the better its chances of popping up as a recommendation when people browse. So when you post a review, you help other readers and the author. To all “Word Up!” reviewers, past and future, thank you.

Continue reading