Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing (Quick and Dirty Tips)

by
4.22 of 5 stars 4.22  ·  rating details  ·  854 ratings  ·  123 reviews
Online sensation Grammar Girl makes grammar fun and easy in this New York Times bestseller

Are you stumped by split infinitives? Terrified of using “who” when a “whom” is called for? Do you avoid the words “affect” and “effect” altogether?

Grammar Girl is here to help!

Mignon Fogarty, a.k.a. Grammar Girl, is determined to wipe out bad grammar—but she’s also determined to make...more
Paperback, 240 pages
Published July 8th 2008 by Holt Paperbacks (first published January 1st 2008)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
On Writing by Stephen KingThe Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr.Eats, Shoots & Leaves by Lynne TrussWriting Down the Bones by Natalie GoldbergGrammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing by Mignon Fogarty
The Art & Business of Writing
5th out of 53 books — 34 voters
The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr.Eats, Shoots & Leaves by Lynne TrussThe Copyeditor's Handbook by Amy Einsohn240 Writing Topics with Sample Essays by Like Test PrepPut Them Through the Maze by T.D. McMichael
Best Books for Editors
8th out of 73 books — 22 voters


More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,138)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Lauren
You've heard her podcast. You've seen her on Oprah. You've downloaded her audiobook. Now you can add the first printed book from Mignon Fogarty (a.k.a. Grammar Girl) to your reference shelf. To the delight of word nerds everywhere, Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing came out yesterday.

Grammar Girl herself offered me an advance copy for review, which I thoroughly enjoyed reading and highly recommend to both grammar novices and experts alike. As the introduction says, the book...more
Al
A 5-star post for a book on grammar, surely I jest. No, I’m totally serious. Everyone who has to write anything – emails for work or just to friends, blog posts, even a review on Goodreads – should want their writing understood. Good grammar makes your intent clearer and gives the boss the right impression. We could all stand a periodic checkup to see if we’ve picked up any bad habits or maybe never learned something in the first place.

Most of us don’t bother because “this stuff is boring.” Tha...more
Kara
A more accurate title would probably be "Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Grammar". There weren't a whole lot of actual writing tips, with the exception of a short chapter near the end with advice like "avoid cliches like the plague".

The grammar instruction was a mix of things I already knew (its vs. it's, affect vs. effect) and things I'd never thought about (the difference between e.g. and i.e., the difference between "hanged" and "hung"). So roughly half the time I felt smug an...more
Susan
Mar 09, 2009 Susan added it
I just orderd this on my Kindle. Effect/Affect are tigers I wrestle with daily. Grrr.
I'm finally learning the rules of a/an. I was sick that day in 4th grade. Seriously, I specifically remember coming back to school and finding out they had learned the rules of a/an. I've felt a little behind ever since.
A motorcycle. An MBA. A ukelele. An ugly duckling. I believe I've been using them correctly, I just didn't know WHY.
William Arsenis
I never understood grammar. I just felt my way through a sentence, playing it over in my mind, using some sort of intuitive editor that managed to get it right most of the time.

But when I started writing and my real editor brought out her digital red pen, I was completely lost. She used phrases such as "predicate adjectives" and I wouldn't have a clue what she was talking about. So I'd just have to concede to her advice or lose face and admit I didn't understand a thing she was saying.

I've tried...more
Felonious
This is the first time I have been intimidated writing a book review. One would think that if I read the book this review would be 100% grammatically correct, that just isn't going to happen (I suffer from grammar allergies). Whenever someone starts talking or I start reading about adjectives, adverbs, conjunctions, and modifiers all I hear is what sounds to me like Charlie Brown's teacher (wah wah wah). I found myself having to reread paragraphs to get some of the information sink in (phrasal v...more
Kara
My life would be less frustrating if everyone read this book.

I can be a little (annoyingly) pedantic when it comes to grammar and usage. I'm not concerned about dangling prepositions or split infinitives, but my god, it gets to me when people misuse "affect" and "effect," comma splice, or think that "e.g." and "i.e." are interchangeable. And don't even get me started on "your" and "you're."

Although I expected this to be kind of dry, I found myself laughing out loud. I thought I would know everyt...more
Beverly Diehl
I think for most people, reading a grammar book is right up there on their to-do list with having a colonoscopy - Do I HAVE to?

Or maybe that's just my own association, since I kept my own book in the bathroom and read it in bits and pieces. (It does lend itself well to that.)

Fogarty not only offers the grammar rules, but clear and "sticky" examples that should help anyone but the most boneheaded imprint these rules and guidelines into her brain. Her own writing style in this is light, witty, and...more
Karen
A humorous take on proper grammar and ways in which one might employ mind tricks to remember basic rules and usage. More of a grammar primer than a style guide. I considered just giving it a star rating and skipping the review lest I showcase my less than stellar grammar usage.
Stephen
I loved this book so much I returned this copy to the library, went out and purchased my own copy. This is a book I want at hand. I cannot recall the last time I read a grammar book from cover to cover. If you write, or read, or speak in English....get this book.
Moira
This is light, funny and very helpful. It's not for those who want an in-depth explanation or hard and fast rules for everything, but if you want guidance for some of the knottier grammar and punctuation issues that writer's encounter, check it out!
Cora
Buenas explicaciones y trucos para problemas con la gramática.
Un muy buen libro de referencia.
Cris
I found Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips to be surprisingly entertaining, but I'm not sure whether it works better as a Q&A for specific questions, or an overview guide to English grammar.

Fogarty's explanations of 'best practices' are clear and she makes an effort to explain the reasoning behind the conventions which helps me, at least, to remember the conventions.

I think Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips would make a fine addition to a High Schooler's reference bookshelf.
Ivonne Rovira
Aug 24, 2013 Ivonne Rovira rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: high-school students especially
This book rates as two stars or four, depending on who you are. If you're an expert English grammarian, Mignon Fogarty's Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing isn't for you; what you need is H.W. Fowler's A Dictionary of Modern English Usage or Karen Elizabeth Gordon's The Transitive Vampire -- or both, really.

However, for hoi polloi grammar needs, Fogarty's slim volume does the trick. If you're stumped on when to use who and whom, further or farther, who's or whose; beset with...more
Geoffrey Sperl
Excellent resource. I read this on the Kindle and found it to be a nice, fast read that entertained while educating.

This should be a five star book.

However, what I have to take a star from it for is the fact that it's the Grammar Girl podcast re-packaged. In fact, if you've listened to the podcast from the start you have already been exposed to the vast majority of the items in the book. It's difficult to really justify giving it five stars when it is repeated material.

All of that said: I do not...more
Saori
This is an introductory, easy-to-read grammar book. I imagine this will be of great use for high school and college students and those who have not learned how to write. I learned English as a second language and also have taken several college courses in linguistics, so the content was actually too familiar to enjoy the book. I wish I had met this book ten years ago.

If you are a native English speaker, this book may catch you off guard and even be delighted at times. You are probably not used...more
Adam Parker
In an attempt to improve my offerings for a friend who is writing his first novel, I picked up a book called Strunk and White's Elements of Style; it was way over my head. After a chapter or two I turned to the fun and quirky writing style of Mignon Fogarty, an author whose grammar tips I had been using for years via her website. I'm glad I did. She took topics like grammar points, word choice, and punctuation, and made them enjoyable to learn about beyond the practicality of the information. I...more
Mars Dorian
What can I say ?

Fogarty's grammar book is one of the most fun I've ever read.
Read that sentence again, because I put 'grammar' and 'fun' in the SAME sentence, insane, I know.

Seriously, if you want to learn English grammar in a fun and engaging way, check out this book.
It's well written, comes with many examples and has a pleasing structure.

For starters and pros alike.
Yvonne
I love GG's podcast and have listened to every one of them--some of them twice! I always learn something in each podcast, or else she confirms something I thought I knew and I get to say "I was right!" I expected her book to deliver no less, and I was not disappointed.

While some of the information in the book is also on the podcast, I enjoy having the book next to my computer so if I have a question, I can quickly refer to the print version instead of having to locate the podcast on her Web site...more
Serenity
Mignon Fogarty uses humor and useful grammar tips in helping the average person learn basic grammar skills that they may have forgotten or never known because their teacher failed to teach it to them in an effective way.

My grammar is questionable at times but I enjoy listening to Grammar Girl's podcast, reading her emails and even following her on twitter daily. I've been listening to her podcast for 2 years so when I read she was writing a book, I KNEW I had to have it in my hands.

Please foll...more
Kara
A more accurate title would probably be "Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Grammar". There weren't a whole lot of actual writing tips, with the exception of a short chapter near the end with advice like "avoid cliches like the plague".

The grammar instruction was a mix of things I already knew (its vs. it's, affect vs. effect) and things I'd never thought about (the difference between e.g. and i.e., the difference between "hanged" and "hung"). So roughly half the time I felt smug an...more
Gina Briganti
Do you love finding an exceptional new tool? I do, and now that I have the Kindle edition of “Grammar Girl’s Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing” by Mignon Fogarty (2008) I may have a tough time purchasing a paper copy of a reference book in the future. The search feature adds loads of ease to answering my grammar and usage questions.

Mignon Fogarty is knowledgeable and fun to read. Who can use this book? Anyone. I typed my question directly into the search feature and results stacked up. I w...more
Andrew Shuping
If you're like me and have trouble figuring out where commas go and which words to use when, its really nice to have a book handy that can give you clear cut examples. And I've looked at lot of them...and frankly half of them put me to sleep. This one though is a quick, easy read and a handy reference tool to have around. Mignon puts things in easy to understand format and uses some creative/humorous examples to illustrate what to use when. Its now a permanent part of my collection and sitting i...more
Reepacheep
Loved it! This book caught my eye at the library when I was looking for materials on proof reading and copy editing. Not only is there a wealth of useful information here, but it is assembled in an easy and very enjoyable manner. The last few chapters on style guides and writing practices came as a pleasant surprise—I wasn't expecting anything more than the rights and wrongs of sentence structure. The writing chapter, in particular, inspired me to think more about actually doing some writing mys...more
V
It took me a long time to get through this one. Mainly because for me the subject matter is dense and I could only read it in chunks. But that is the way the book is set up and lends itself to chunk reading nicely. Also, she really does try and make it as entertaining as possible.
Kelly
As a guide to common grammatical and stylistic mistakes I rate this book highly. It does what it sets out to do, which is to explain confusing concepts in language that is straight-forward, clear and understandable. Sometimes I would suspect the author was leaving something out, only to see her address the problem within a paragraph or two. The book is well organized, well referenced, and its index looks useful, though I didn't take the time examine it closely since I was reading the book for pl...more
Teresa
I saw this book recommended by Gotham Writer's Workshop's enewsletter and knew I had to get my hands on it. Yes, this is the sort of book I love to read for fun. Fiction is for sissies! Just kidding, but this really is the sort of book I read for fun. Oddly enough, the cover of the book I borrowed from the library today has a different cover (it's the cover as shown for the Kindle edition of the book). Since the pub date is 2008 as is for the cover shown here, I'll assume it's the same book (and...more
Julie Adams
Great information. The one change I would make is easier indexing of this book's contents on my electronic device. I will use this every week.
Dave Yaeger
The new handbook for writers. It's that good.
Kelly
I feel smarter now. I've always been able to tell when someone's writing was incorrect, but didn't always know how to correct it. Social media posts usually drive me crazy with their poor use of grammar, spelling, and punctuation. This book gives you the best quick tips for improving your writing. It's written in a fun and clear way that is easy for anyone to understand. And, it's not a huge book that you have to dig through to get the help you need. It is a simply laid out guide. I will refer t...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 71 72 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Line by Line: How to Edit Your Own Writing
  • Page After Page: Discover the Confidence and Passion You Need to Start Writing and Keep Writing (No Matter What!)
  • Wired for Story: The Writer's Guide to Using Brain Science to Hook Readers from the Very First Sentence
  • The Subversive Copy Editor: Advice from Chicago (or, How to Negotiate Good Relationships with Your Writers, Your Colleagues, and Yourself)
  • Common Errors in English Usage
  • Everyday Editing
  • GMC: Goal, Motivation and Conflict: The Building Blocks of Good Fiction
  • The Deluxe Transitive Vampire: A Handbook of Grammar for the Innocent, the Eager and the Doomed
  • Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook: Hands-On Help for Making Your Novel Stand Out and Succeed
  • Sin and Syntax: How to Craft Wickedly Effective Prose
  • Spunk & Bite: A Writer's Guide to Punchier, More Engaging Language & Style
  • Characters, Emotion & Viewpoint: Techniques and Exercises for Crafting Dynamic Characters and Effective Viewpoints
  • The Elements of F*cking Style: A Helpful Parody
  • Woe Is I: The Grammarphobe's Guide to Better English in Plain English
  • Artful Sentences: Syntax as Style
  • Grammar Snobs Are Great Big Meanies: A Guide to Language for Fun and Spite
  • The Associated Press Stylebook: and Briefing on Media Law, Fully Revised and Updated [2004]
  • The Copyeditor's Handbook: A Guide for Book Publishing and Corporate Communications, with Exercises and Answer Keys
620146
Better known as Grammar Girl.
More about Mignon Fogarty...
The Grammar Devotional: Daily Tips for Successful Writing from Grammar Girl Grammar Girl's 101 Misused Words You'll Never Confuse Again Grammar Girl Presents the Ultimate Writing Guide for Students Grammar Girl's 101 Troublesome Words You'll Master in No Time Grammar Girl's 911 Punctuation: Your Guide to Writing it Right

Share This Book

“I love you. You are the object of my affection and the object of my sentence.” 13 likes
“...passive voice is better than writing out a humongous number and taking the risk that your readers' brains will be numb by the time they get to the verb.” 5 likes
More quotes…