At some point during the night I go from sleeping comfortably to being curled up in a tight little ball, resulting in pain and intense achy stiffness in the morning. If I have an obligation I just deal with it and get up. But on my days off I stay in bed, laying flat on my back, sleeping in 20-minute increments for another two hours or so, and by then the pain is gone and I finally feel rested. While that's nice, it doesn't help me on work days, and it means I don't wake up until about 10am on my days off, so I lose a big chunk of my morning. [more inside]
I've recently noticed an irritating trend in English-language writing: sections that really should be written in the past perfect tense are instead in the simple past tense. I've seen this more in American English than in British English, but that might just be confirmation bias. Is there a reason for this, for example a new style of teaching in schools or universities? And is it really new, or am I just looking for things to get annoyed about? [more inside]
I'm asking this for a friend, A. A has a pinched nerve in the neck that isn't getting any better. He has bad posture and sits in a cubicle all day. He would like to see a physical therapist for this, but has also heard good things about the Alexander technique for correcting posture. Which would you recommend? [more inside]
Any advice on how to switch from writing in second person to writing from a first- or third-person viewpoint? [more inside]
Excellent Action Scenes In Books? I'm looking for examples of tense, fast paced action sequences in novels and short stories. The written equivalent to the cinematic on-the-edge-of-your-seat-oh-crap-the-person-may-die-how-will-they-escape thing. Bonus if the situation is complex yet reads like a clear, clockwork machine. [more inside]
Tenses without English equivalents? [more inside]
This is a long shot, but my SO is trying to identify a film he saw 15-20 years ago, in France, that he would love to re-watch. Unfortunately, he's forgotten the title. The film may be French, but we're not 100% sure. He doesn't remember any famous actors starring. Can anyone help? Plot inside... [more inside]
Have the rules for using the present progressive (continuous) tense in English recently evolved/changed? [more inside]
How do I keep from messing up my neck & shoulders in my sleep? [more inside]
GrammarFilter: Present Perfect Passive Progressive. Real or a myth? [more inside]
What tense is the following sentence: "If you were still around, we would have had a Merry Christmas by now." [more inside]
What is the origin in English of the present continuous tense (present progressive tense)? [more inside]
I often find myself tensing muscles in weird ways, generally in my throat/chest/abdomen. It is uncomfortable, and it makes me feel short of breath, but I keep doing it. How do I stop? [more inside]
Explain tenses to me? Past/present/future, continuous/simple/perfect, and so on, in English. I can use them with fluency, but I need to be able to explain them (when each is used, how to form them). I've tried Fowler's, Chicago Manual of Style, and a number of other resources, but they seem to subtly contradict one another. Is there a simple, go-to reference for this?
is there a grammar checker out there that will check my documents for consistent tense? I have a teacher who's a real stickler, and even if I go over my paper with a fine toothed comb, I always miss one or two. Does anybody have a program I could use to save myself some points in class?
Verb tense in fiction [more inside]