Writing Tip 5 – 5 Pairs of Words and Their Useful Distinctions

It has been so long since I have posted here, and I truly apologize for my neglect. I’m now going to start posting as often as possible, at least a couple times a month. I thought I would resume my journey on this blog with a question that inspired writing tip number five: Do you really know the difference between these commonly mixed-up words? Improve your diction by learning the difference between the following (five, since this is writing tip number five) pairs of words below.

1. Illegible/Unreadable

These words both describe something that is difficult to read because the text has been damaged or obscured, but unreadable can also refer to the poor quality of the content.

2. Incomparable/Uncomparable

Incomparable: An intensifier to mean that what is being described is so excellent that no other thing can compare

Uncomparable: Something about what is being described prevents it from being compared to anything else

3. Inequality/Inequity 

Inequality: Quantative connotation; except in references to racial/gender discrimination when it means something similar to inequity (see below)

Inequity: An inequality borne of injustice/unfairness

4. Inexplainable/Unexplainable

Tricked you there. These words basically mean the same thing, except that inexplicable has also developed a connotation of an illogial or irrational quality.

5. Valuable/Invaluable

Valuable: Something that has value

Invaluable: Something that has value that, because of its quality or intangible importance, cannot be quantified



Writing Tip 4 – The Most Overused Words of 2012

Hi everyone! Happy New Year — wow, I can’t believe it’s 2013 already!!! One of my New Year’s Resolutions is to post on this blog more, especially since I didn’t even post at all in December.

To ring in the new year, here’s a writing tip: don’t overuse these words — they were already overused in 2012.

And without further ado, THE MOST OVERUSED WORDS OF 2012:

From the Business blog Quartz: 




From the social networking for professionals website LinkedIn:








From the Shift Communications PR Agency:





From Lake Superior Universitiy’s “Banished Words List”:



From Atlantic Wire: 







Writing Tip 3 – Weighing the Pros and Cons of Accidental Alliteration, Puns & Rhyming

Alliteration, puns and rhyming are three of the best techniques to draw a reader into your work, and you can use them to your advantage.  However, when used ineffectively, your work can turn into a disaster. Here’s the pros and cons of these three literary techniques.



– Alliteration can entertain as well as inform the reader at the same time when used in moderation.

– It’s fun to write. Notice the title of this post – “accidental alliteration.” That was an accident, I can assure you. Let’s not pretend here, you find this hilarious.


Alliteration can backfire if it’s overused, since readers will focus on the alliteration itself and not the message you’re trying to convey.



– Puns can be used to fool a reader, and they are smart literary devices to use when trying to convey meaning.

– You feel on top of the world when you find a pun.


– Unintended punning. It may come out wrong because it was unintended.



– It’s melodic.

– Especially in poems, rhyming usually works in favor of a literary work.


– Too much rhyming is a pain, unless having a perfect rhyme scheme helps develop the theme of your poem.

– Rhyming prose. Just don’t do it.