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Chapter 7. Multiple-Vehicle Wrecks: Pron... > It Just Proves There's Someone for E... - Pg. 69

Multiple-Vehicle Wrecks: Pronoun Reference 69 Strictly Speaking Remember that a pronoun replaces a noun. To make sure that your writing is clear, always use the noun before you use the pronoun. The Numbers Game There's no rule that limits the number of pronouns you can use--as long as each pronoun clearly refers to a single antecedent. For example: · The office manager bought cheap, knock-off keyboards for his steno pool, but they fell apart quickly because they were not suited to heavy use. The pronoun "his" refers to the office manager; the pronoun "they" refers to the "keyboards." Tag, You're It How about giving it a shot? Rewrite each of the following sentences to make the pronouns clearly refer to their antecedents. Not to panic: Remember that there's more than one way to skin a cat, make decent coffee, and fix unclear pronoun references. 1. 2. When Fred and Louie return home, he will call. ____________________________________________________________________ When Dennis spoke to Keith that morning, he did not realize that he might win the lottery by the end of the day. ____________________________________________________________________ When the rain started, we pulled out an umbrella and opened it. It dampened our spirits for a while, but we decided to stick it out. ____________________________________________________________________ If you asked Doug to describe Nick, he would say that he was sly, boring, and cheap--and then he would chuckle. ____________________________________________________________________ Ask Nick about Doug, and he would say that, while he couldn't be a gossip, he was sure that he had links with the Young Republicans. ____________________________________________________________________ He didn't consider him a safe driver, either. ____________________________________________________________________ 3. 4. 5. 6. Answers Possible responses: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. When Fred and Louie return home, Fred will call. (Or Louie could be doing the calling just as easily.) When Dennis spoke to Keith that morning, Dennis did not realize that he might win the lottery by the end of the day. (Again, Keith might just as easily have been the winner.) When the rain started, we pulled out an umbrella and opened it. The rain dampened our spirits for a while, but we decided to stick it out. If you asked Doug to describe Nick, Doug would say that Nick was sly, boring, and cheap and --then Doug would chuckle. Ask Nick about Doug, and Nick would say that, while he couldn't be a gossip, he was sure that Doug had links with the Young Republicans. Nick didn't consider Doug a safe driver, either.