Get your basics right: A comprehensive course on written English


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Many of us would have had this experience of having a college education and entering one of these professions that revolve around writing or editing—and then realizing that we're absolutely not ready to handle our work with confidence! This course, Essentials of Written English, addresses that fundamental issue, as it helps you to become ready to take up a career in writing or editing.

I can tell you that I've been there, facing all the problems that people generally face. But one good thing in me was that I had an innate urge to document any problem I faced, anything that I struggled with, anything that took me a longer time to learn, grasp, or apply. That coupled with the fact that I had to lead a team quite early in my life forced me to evolve my own methods of teaching editing.

Over the years I evolved a fairly robust method of teaching, backed up by some good books that I'd read, and this in turn followed by many years of testing in the battlefield of life. About 23 years of effort have gone into building this course, which I believe will eliminate all the pains that I went through and also cut short your own learning time to a great extent.

What else is special about this course?

  • The first thing is that we'll cover over 200 principles with just 14 rules.
  • And even though I have been teaching this for many years now, it amazes me that just 14 rules of written English can cover almost everything.
  • With these 14 rules, you can pretty much do any kind of writing or editing in the English language, whatever be your genre.
  • The key is to know what to apply where, which is something that anybody can learn as they start applying principles outlined in the course.

The next wonderful thing is that the rules are arranged in such a way that each rule leads to the next.

  • The most important element in a sentence is the subject. So we start with the problems associated with the noun, namely, the apostrophe.
  • When we add a verb to noun, we have a sentence. But the verb in turn can decide whether we can add something more.

This in turn can bring in a whole lot of possibilities. Let's look at a few sentences:

I want food.
I want to sleep.
I slept.
I slept on the couch.
I slept on the couch till 3 am.
I slept on the couch till 3 am, when I woke up and realized that I'd been in a strange, eerie world.

No matter what we add into a sentence, it must always satisfy one important condition: that it always represents one complete unit of thought.

This definition of a sentence is important as it is the basis of all that we're going to learn. Our thinking process is fragmentary in nature, and therefore constantly at loggerheads with this definition of a sentence. We don't use sentences to think; we think in a fragmented way. In fact, there can be three levels of fragmentary thinking, all of which can adversely affect our comprehension of a sentence. It is against this definition of a sentence that we're going to constantly check everything that we're going to write.

Now, let's take it further:

  • When we look at a simple subject, verb, object arrangement, we can have a listing of subjects, verbs or objects and so we discuss the use and nonuse of the serial comma.
  • When we bring in a subject and a verb together, we discuss subject–verb agreement.
  • When we attempt to write clear sentences, we look at essential and nonessential elements. And when we bring in more and more things into a sentence, we bring in the concept of keeping related things together so that comprehension is not lost.
  • Keeping related words together is not something that we will use only for writing long sentences. In fact, it is the central rule, the pivot, around which everything revolves. We'll use this rule to prove, by simple logic, whether a sentence is right or wrong—all within our basic definition of a sentence.
  • We can also have sentences that do not begin with the subject. So we discuss the principle of introductory constructions.
  • And we'll also discuss the use of pronouns to avoid the monotony that can be caused by repetition of certain nouns.

Now let's see what happens when we move beyond a sentence. . . .

  • What are the ways in which we can join two independent ideas—independent clauses, so to speak?
  • How do we draw attention to something, emphasize something? We can of course use italic or boldface, but is there a way to draw attention to something without using these typographic improvisations, using just plain text?
  • We talked about our thinking process being fragmentary in nature. Is there a way to accommodate the twists and turns of the thought process in a piece of writing?

All these lead us to discussions on the semicolon, colon, and the dash.

We then move on to elegance of expression, where we introduce the principle of parallelism and the concept of using the most minimal words to convey what we want to convey.

So you see how these rules are all connected, and within this progressive journey, we still cover 200 principles of writing!

Overall, the course will help you to become quite confident with your basic language skills, help you to do things much better than most people, and thereby earn more.

This is not all. We also have some intermediate and advanced courses in editing, all of which are based entirely on this course, which is why we call it as Essentials of Written English.

So, press the blue button below which says "I want to take this course!" (See link below the video or down below, or the button on the sidebar if reading this on the website.) You will be asked to choose 1 of 4 options. Go through each of the options and choose the one that suits you.
Fill in some details, choose your own password, make the payment, and you're ready to go!

Thanks for watching! Look forward to seeing you in the course! 

I want to take this course!





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