Who’s and whose

Who’s and whose actually follow the same rule as it’s and its. Who’s is always short for who is; whose is the possessive. Two former workmates taught me a good way to remember this – have you heard of Who’s Who? It’s a British publication that gives basic information about a number of well-known people … More Who’s and whose

Much and many

Much and many can be confusing – it’s all about countable and uncountable (or measurable) nouns. You can count raindrops (if you’re fast!), so you use “many” when referring to them. But you can’t count water. You can measure it, by the cup, or the litre, so in this case you use “much”.

Less and fewer

Confused about when to use less or fewer? There’s a rule in English that we treat countable nouns and uncountable nouns differently. This comes into play for fewer and less. If we’re talking about countable nouns – things you can count – we use fewer. Ten items or fewer (we can count the items); fewer … More Less and fewer

Using macrons

Microsoft Word doesn’t make adding macrons to Māori words in your documents a straightforward exercise, or at least it doesn’t feel like one. There’s no key you can just type them in with, and increasingly we’re becoming aware of words that we should have been including macrons on. First of all – what’s a macron? … More Using macrons