Jenifer Paquette

Jenifer Paquette

Dr. Jenifer Paquette teaches English in higher education with her areas of expertise running from the history of the English language and the intricacies of grammatical rules to guidelines for effective writing and communication across disciplines.

Author of the Klauden’s Ring Saga and the Conjuring Fascination series, JM Paquette writes fantasy and paranormal romance novels. When she isn’t writing, she can be found teaching English, discussing Tolkien, editing books, guest co-hosting the podcast Drinking with Authors, and watching Russian dragon shifter movies.

You may also find her guest co-hosting the podcast Drinking with Authors--even though she doesn’t drink, she loves getting to know fellow authors! Check out JM Paquette at authorjmpaquette.com and 4horsemenpublications.com, on Twitter @authorjmp and @editorjmp13, and as Author JM Paquette on Facebook and Instagram.

  1. Archaism

    What is an Archaism? An archaism is an out-of-style word or phrase, such as “whilst,” “thusly,” or “thou.” Key Concepts: Diction Why Do Archaisms Matter? When cultivating your own personal writing style, you want to avoid sounding stilted, rehearsed, artificial. And one surefire way to sound artificial is to produce stilted writing by loading your text with old theatrical-sounding words. Here...

    Published on Mar 07th 2012

  2. Articles

    English has three articles: a, an, and the. These little words are used to introduce certain nouns, but there are specific rules regarding the use of each one. When do I use an article? "A" is used before a general noun that has not been introduced to the reader. A cat walked by my door. (Note: I don't know this...

    Published on Feb 20th 2020

  3. Choppy Writing

    Choppy writing uses short words and simplistic diction. short, primer-style sentences (i.e., sentences that don't connect to each other). How can I improve choppy writing? Connect some of your ideas together with conjunctions and/or segues. Make two short sentences into one longer one. Writing feels choppy when the sentences are very short, and the sentences do not connect to each...

    Published on Feb 27th 2020

  4. Conjunctions

    Conjunctions, a part of speech, refer to words that connect words, phrases, or clauses. Words that show relationships between ideas, across words, phrases, clauses, and sentences. Key Concepts: Coordination & Subordination; Organizational Schema; Sentences; Writer-Based vs. Reader-Based Prose Why Do Conjunctions Matter? Writers, speakers, knowledge workers . . . use conjunctions to aid coherence—especially to join co-equal ideas via coordinating...

    Published on Feb 14th 2020

  5. Coordinating Conjunctions

    Coordinating conjunctions are words that are used to join two sentences together. Example: I'm reading, and I'm writing. Key Concepts: Flow, Coherence, Unity; Grammar; Organization; Organizational Schema & Logical Reasoning; Parts of Speech; Sentences; Writer-Based vs. Reader-Based Prose Commas are used when two independent clauses are connected by coordinating conjunctions: Ex: She was tired, so she went home.She was tired...

    Published on Feb 24th 2020

  6. Coordination & Subordination

    What is Coordination and Subordination? Coordination and Subordination are commonplace ways for writers, speakers, knowledge workers . . . to combine sentences. Related Concepts: Independent Clauses, Dependent Clauses & Phrases Coordination Writers, speakers, knowledge workers . . . use coordination when they want to join sentences when the ideas expressed in those sentences are coequal or equivalent. Thus, you use...

    Published on Oct 21st 2021

  7. Description

    What is Description? Description is the use of prose—especially concrete, sensory language and figurative language—to describe events, people, ideas, concepts a dominant and powerful form of human expressionDescription plays a role in all genres. In fact, it's commonplace for writers to describe the context that informs their text, including a discussion of ongoing scholarly conversationsa way of categorizing discoursea dominant...

    Published on Aug 07th 2019

  8. Edit for Diction

    A diction problem happens when you use a word in the wrong context or use a word that does not mean what you intended it to mean in that situation. Key Concepts: Register; Rhetorical Reasoning Writers, speakers, knowledge workers . . . are wise to engage in self critique of their writing. It's particularly important for writers to consider the...

    Published on Apr 13th 2012

  9. Flow – How to Create Flow in Writing

    What is Flow? Flow refers to the logical coherence of a text, a sense of organization, a sense that the text uses the best organizational schema given the complexities of the rhetorical situationthe sense that new information/data is woven into a text in ways that make logical and rhetorical sensethe sense a writer, speaker, knowledge worker . . . or...

    Published on Sep 10th 2019

  10. Generalizations, Overgeneralizations

    What is Overgeneralization? Overgeneralizations are sweeping generalizations about a group of people, things, topics. Here are some examples of overgeneralizations: Pit bulls are aggressive.Rich people are greedy.Beautiful people are conceited.Politicians are corrupt.People who commit crimes come from troubled backgrounds.College students love partying.Marijuana users are lazy.People always demand too much of my time.Why do I always catch every red light?She always...

    Published on Dec 13th 2021

  11. Hyphens

    A hyphen (-) is used in the middle of a multi-word idea or joins two related words together. (The hyphen key is next to the +/= key on your keyboard (the same key with the underscore _ ) Use hyphens to join compound words and avoid awkward or confusing word combinations. A hyphen (-) is used in the middle of...

    Published on Sep 11th 2019

  12. Independent Clauses, Dependent Clauses & Phrases

    What are Clauses & Phrases? Clauses & Phrases are the building blocks of a sentence in Standard Written English. Related Concepts: Modifiers, Modification Clauses A clause is a group of words that includes a subject and a verb. Clauses are divided into Independent ClausesDependent Clauses. Independent Clauses An independent clause has a subject and a predicate and can stand on...

    Published on Oct 19th 2021

  13. Modifiers, Modification

    Modifiers are words, phrases, or clauses that describe another word in a sentence. Modifiers change the sentence meaning. Modifiers change the meaning of a sentence by adding details and qualifying information. Generally, English places modifiers as close to the word (or group of words) they describe as possible. When modifiers are placed in their proper position in a sentence, they...

    Published on Feb 21st 2020

  14. Parallelism, Parallel Structure, Parallel Construction

    What is Parallelism, Parallel Structure, Parallel Construction? Parallelism, aka Parallel Structure or Parallel Construction, is a grammatical structure in an English sentence. A sentence uses parallelism when two or more elements in the sentence are grammatically similar or identical in structure, sound, meaning, or meter, as illustrated below. Related Concepts: Edit for Parallelism; Voice; Tone; Why does Parallelism Matter? Parallel...

    Published on Apr 02nd 2012

  15. Parts of a Sentence

    Parts of a Sentence refers to the basic building blocks of Standard Written or Spoken English. Generally speaking, when subject matter experts use the term, Parts of a Sentence, they are referring to Subjects (S)Verbs (V) and, sometimes, 3. Objects (O), either Indirect Objects (IO) or Direct Objects (D0). Additionally, subject matter experts may referring to Independent Clauses, Dependent Clauses,...

    Published on Oct 22nd 2021

  16. Primer Sentences

    How can short sentences be effectively combined? Use Coordinating Conjunctions Simple sentences about a single topic may also be combined by using coordinating conjunctions (for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so) and/or modifying clauses. Series of related sentences: Central Park is an urban park that is 843 acres. It is located in New York City. The park has several attractions...

    Published on Feb 08th 2020

  17. Pronoun – Guide to Writing with Pronouns

    If these sentences seem ok, that may be because you may hear people say them in everyday discourse. Still, from the standard of British or American English, the first three sentences contain a pronoun error. The fourth sentence, which until recently would have been considered an error, is correct. What Are Pronouns? Pronouns are words that substitute for other nouns. For...

    Published on Feb 14th 2020

  18. Research Question

    What is a Research Question? The Research Question is the question the author is exploring. Related Concepts: Organizational Schema Research Question A research question is a guiding question that an author uses to guide his or her research while gathering information for a project. Research questions typically appear in an annotated bibliography or other summary of a writer’s research. Generally,...

    Published on Feb 10th 2020

  19. Revise for Thesis or Research Question

    First, make sure that the paper actually has a thesis that predicts what the rest of the paragraphs will be about. Once your thesis is clear, read each paragraph; this would be an ideal time to consider topic sentences (those sentences that control the focus of the paragraph) and ask yourself if those points are introduced or referenced in the...

    Published on Feb 20th 2020

  20. Sentence Patterns

    Sentence Patterns is a way of categorizing sentences in Standard English. The basic building block of a sentence in standard English, as illustrated by the article on Sentence Parts is "Subject + Predicate."The subject is the actor in the sentence. It is whatever is doing what the verb describes. The predicate includes the rest of the sentence—the verb or the...

    Published on Oct 20th 2021

  21. Sentence Structure

    What is Sentence Structure? It is a way of categorizing sentences by identifying the absence or presence of clauses (independent and dependent)conjunctions subordinators (see Coordination and Subordination). From this perspective, the English sentence has four major building blocks: 1. Simple Sentence Structureone independent clause (IC). 2. Compound Sentence Structuretwo independent clauses (IC IC) connected by a coordinating conjunction.3. Complex Sentence Structureone independent...

    Published on Apr 02nd 2012

  22. Sentence Types

    Sentence Types in English are DeclarativeImperativeInterrogativeExclamatory. Sentence Types categorize sentences by their function—i.e., by what the sentence is doing Declarativedeclare something!Imperativemake requests, give ordersInterrogativeask questionsExclamatorygive emphasis and an excited tone! Examples of Sentence Types 1. Declarative Sentences Declarative Sentences literally declare something.   Ex: Today is Tuesday.  My name is Jean.  The weather is lovely today.  I read books to my...

    Published on Oct 20th 2021

  23. Sentences

    Definition Sentences are a grammatical unit, involving a subject and a verb ora subject, verb, and objectthe basic building blocks of thought, the ways we encode and decode informationa signal, a sign, of education, literacy, professionalism, work ethic. Related Concepts: Edit for AWK(Awkward); Edit for Sentence Fragments; Edit for Parallelism; Edit for Run-On Sentences; Edit for Sentence Structure Why Do...

    Published on Feb 23rd 2020

  24. Subject-Verb Agreement

    What Is Subject-Verb Agreement? Subject-verb agreement happens when the subject and verb of a clause agree in number. For the subject and verb to agree, a singular subject must take a singular verb, and a plural subject must take a plural verb. A verb denotes action, existence, or occurrence. A subject denotes the person or thing that performs the action,...

    Published on Jul 17th 2012

  25. Subjects, Verbs, & Objects

    Subject, Verbs, & Objects are the basic build blocks of a sentence in Standard Written English. Subject and Verb (SV) The subject is whom or what the sentence is all about. The subject performs the action of the verb. He or she (or it) is the actor, the protagonist. The predicate – says something significant (complete idea) about the subject. It must include a main verb....

    Published on Oct 22nd 2021

  26. Subordinating Conjunctions

    A subordinating conjunction connects an independent clause to a dependent (subordinate) clause: an independent clause is a sentence that is a complete thought and therefore can stand aloneExample: I survived the class.a dependent clause is an incomplete sentence, a fragment. It cannot express a complete thought. It cannot be punctuated as a sentence. Example: Although I survived the class. Key...

    Published on Feb 24th 2020

  27. Vague Language

    What is Vague Language? Ambiguous Language? Vague Language (aka Ambiguous Language) is language that is abstract, undecipherable, underdeveloped, fragmenteda defining characteristic of weak writing and writer-based prose style. Examples of vague language are generalization, overgeneralizations—a sweeping statement about a group of people, things, topic.an excessive number of non-specific adjectives like good, bad, okay, pretty, happy, and sad, which give an...

    Published on Mar 01st 2020

  28. Verb-Tense Shift

    A verb-tense shift occurs when a writer changes tense within a single piece of writing. Tense is the term for what time frame verbs refer to. Standard American English has a number of tenses, each of which is a variation on past, present, or future. Any switching of tense within a sentence, paragraph, or longer piece of writing is a...

    Published on Feb 24th 2020