Word Watch

Word Watch by Patricia McLinnA Writer’s Guide to the Slippery, Sneaky,
and Otherwise Tricky

Welcome to a word usage book with attitude. (Some say humor, too, but nearly everyone agrees on attitude.) WORD WATCH is a compilation of columns written over several years for writers’ newsletters. It stemmed from a conversation with a fellow author, who suggested — none too gently — that Word Watch quit griping about words being misused by writers and do something about it.

So, here it is: An attempt to share a lifetime of word usage scrutiny and a journalistic career of picky editing.


  • To look up a specific word or phrase, check the alphabetical inventory at the beginning of this book. Then click on the capitalized link (or links) associated with it to go to that discussion.
  • Read the columns month by month.
  • Browse at will.
  • Engrave on your heart.


“Keep it handy on your desk. Take it along for casual browsing … Read four or five entries a day to give your brain a good workout-and your spirit a good laugh.”

– 5-Star review

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