Q & A

Feel free to send me questions about grammar, spelling, punctuation; writing, editing or social media. I will post the answers here:


Q: “There are numerous occasions when I would ‘naturally’ either use either a bold or italic typeface for emphasis. I doubt that you would consider that to be appropriate. If you find a moment to pass on a nugget of professional advice, I would be grateful.”

A: Your instinct to curb your use of italics and boldface is correct.
Remember, less is more! Italics may be used sparingly. Read the sentence out
loud and if a word is said with great exaggeration, or if the word is
foreign or unfamiliar to your readers, you may use italics. But as people
read, they place their own emphasis on words without the prompt. Any change
in typeface halts the flow of reading, so be gentle with it.

I copied and pasted this from a useful website –> “H.W. Fowler cautioned
that many people, though competent in their own special subject, don’t have
enough writing experience to realize that they shouldn’t try to achieve
emphasis by italicizing something in every tenth sentence. With experience
comes the competence to frame sentences so that emphatic words fall in
emphatic places” (4). Garner therefore advises us to use italics for
emphasis sparingly. If you overuse italics, then nothing will stand out.

Hope that helps…oh, and no boldface!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s