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The Vexing Problem of Numbers – Advice From Thomas Hauck, Author and Ghostwriter

In the English language, we have an alphabet of twenty-six letters. We use these letters to form words and sentences. Each letter is unique; generally, for any given word formed of letters, you can’t substitute other letters without changing the … Continue reading

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Verb Tenses: Simple Past and Past Perfect – By Thomas Hauck, Author and Editor

One of the useful tools that can help you tell your story–most often as a novelist, but sometimes as a self-help author–is that you can take the reader backwards and forwards in time. Nothing is quite so boring as simply … Continue reading

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Citations in Self-Help Books – Advice from Thomas Hauck, Ghostwriter and Book Editor

I edit many self-help books. My clients – the wonderful and conscientious authors – often refer to other sources or discuss ideas that are circulating in society. They often ask me about citations. When should you give credit to another … Continue reading

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Thomas Hauck, Editor: Capitalization of Job Titles and the “Janitor Rule”

I subscribe to the New Yorker. It’s a great magazine and I look forward to every issue. I’ve noticed, though, that they have a odd approach to capitalizing job titles, specifically that of the president of the United States. Let’s … Continue reading

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Thomas Hauck, Editor: Verb Tenses and Describing the Past

When you write about events that happened in the past, the simplest way is to use what is appropriately called the simple past: A) Jack and Jill went up the hill. B) I gave her the message. The simple past … Continue reading

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“That” or “Which”? Advice from Thomas Hauck, Ghostwriter and Book Editor

I’ve edited hundreds of books and documents, and one of the issues that drives writers crazy is trying to figure out when to use “that” or “which” when either is used to introduce a dependent clause that modifies a preceding … Continue reading

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Book Editing: Changing the Voice of a Book or Document – Insight from Thomas Hauck, Book Editor and Ghostwriter

Occasionally, a client for whom I am editing a book will ask, “Does the book sound natural? Does it sound like a native English speaker writing in a conversational tone?” Often the clients who ask me this reside outside the … Continue reading

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Quotes, Italics, Boldface, and Capitals – Advice from Thomas Hauck, Book Editor and Ghostwriter

Every writer wants his or her words to leap off the page. We all experience the anxiety that the reader will lose interest or will fail to grasp a particularly important point or word. And so many writers resort to … Continue reading

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Thomas Hauck, Editor: Notes on Capitalization

The rules of capitalization – when to capitalize words and when to write them in lower case – are complex and can seem baffling. Inconsistencies abound, even in professional publications and major media sources. In business writing, though, there is a general tendency to … Continue reading

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Thomas Hauck, Editor: Ghostwriting, Editing, and Proofreading

This post is a reprint of a short guide to hiring a ghostwriter, editor, or proofreader that I send to many of my clients. Your Guide to Ghostwriting, Editing, and Proofreading Since the days when monks wrote on parchment, people … Continue reading

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