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It’s Been A While Since Google Did Searches Write

... sometimes google gets it right and then they go south...
R
ecently I was editing a novel and came across, “It’s been a while.” I stopped and wondered: should it be two words or one? Satisfied it was correct, I continued my edits, but sometimes I have to stop and check with some authority.
But how to check? Pull out a book, right?
Now I’ve read any number of books on language, grammar, and style. Each day I’ll read a chunk and store it away in my head, somewhere, I hope, in the non-corrupted sectors. Over time, my polluted mind is either certain on a particular issue or completely fuzzy. Fuzzy seems more prevalent. I love these books, but they don’t work as reference material for me. Even if I remembered what book dealt with a certain issue, I’d have to find the book, then search the pages to find the entry at which point I’d discover it wasn’t quite how I remembered it.
Time for the internet.
If your not familiar with this site: Common Errors in English Usage check it out, but after your finish reading my blog.
The next step is a standard google search, but I’ve discovered something I hate about google. They want to correct spelling. They never did before. It makes searching on usage less effective.
The trick is using quotes, not on phrases but on individual words.
When I searched: brenson raine, I got lots of results with Benson and Rain. Not what I was looking for, but Google assumes I made mistakes in my typing. Where’s my shotgun?
Searching with “Brenson” “raine” gets me closer.
Give it a try.
Posted 2011/09/20 at 20h56ET in Editing, Google, Language, Words.

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