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Bonnie Trenga

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    Editor, Proofreader and Writer

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  1. Annoying resident editor here to criticize--and therefore help you improve--this writing. I would avoid the misplaced modifier in the first sentence (Using a XXXXX moisture meter, evidence). Using a x moisture meter, I found evidence of moisture in the wall below the valley over the front bedroom. Then I would make the remaining sentences more active and then correct the spelling error (competant): When I inspected the roof and soffits/eaves and/or attic in this area, I discovered XXXXXXX, which could be the source of the leak. A competent roofing contractor should repair this because there might be hidden damage to the structure in this area. Did you all see how I made each sentence active, removing nominalizations and passive voice? If not, I would love to help you through my writing class. May I ask why it's hard for inspectors to say, "I found this" instead of "X was found"? Did someone teach you to not use "I"? It seems clients would expect you to use "I" since they know you personally are inspecting the house.
  2. Hey, Brad. I just found this thread. I hope you're doing much better. I had my own bout of never-ending surgery in 1999, so I sympathize completely. I felt like doing a victory lap when I could eat a quarter of a tuna sandwich. I couldn't do that lap for a few months, but I did eventually. Take care, Bonnie
  3. Ready when you are. First, do you know what nominalizations and passive voice are? It's hard to eliminate them if you don't know how to identify them. Second, would you mind trying to cut it down first? I like your four-point summary in your second message. Perhaps start with that in mind. Just one or two sentences under each head should suffice. Have fun chopping! I'll be happy to help you if you have trouble with your ax. One of my loyal clients calls me The Hatchet Lady. Bonnie
  4. I do think it makes you sound friendly, but it's a lot of verbiage to get through. If I were a customer, I might skim it or skip it. I would rather read a shorter blurb. Also, a numbered list for the layout section might be easier to follow. I did like your verb "clog." Those kind of interesting verbs make reports much more palatable. I could certainly help you tighten it up (by at least a third), get rid of nominalizations and passive voice, and fix a misplaced modifier/other grammatical issues. I might also like to alert you to my writing course, available through this site.
  5. That is wonderful news! A 13-yr-old who knows about MMs besting a who-knows-how-old inspector! Thanks for the laugh!
  6. That's good advice about winter vs. summer usage. Since it's the guest room, almost no one is ever in it, so the fan is never on. We just want the light to work when we turn it on. Mounting the remote's cradle is a great idea!! Now what about the fact that I have to press the darn button six or seven times for it to work?
  7. Thanks for all your suggestions. You're the best!
  8. Hi, guys. It's been a while since I've posted anything, so I thought I'd ask you about something annoying in my house. Our guest bedroom has a ceiling fan that has a remote controller. If I want to go in the room and turn on the light switch, it doesn't turn the light on. I have to press the buttons on the remote controller several times until it goes on. I can then turn off the light with the light switch, but if I want it on again I have to press the remote controller buttons several times. Is there an easy way for us to fix this or do we need a new switch/ceiling fan?
  9. I think the best way to shop for your female significant other is to listen. Sometime when you're out together and she says something like, "Oh, that's a nice _________" take note and consider buying her that thing. We women sometimes indirectly say we want things without spelling it out explicitly. When I was in Italy I saw and commented on a number of pretty shirts (but didn't buy any). My husband was present but I doubt it registered with him. We'll see this Xmas... On the other hand, he never says, "Oh, that's a nice sander" or whatever. If he did, I'd jump right on it!
  10. Interesting. What is it and where can I see more info on it? My six-year-old has a completely useless helicopter toy to play with, and Tom has never seemed too excited. Good suggestion, though. I do like the idea of an antique compass. There's an antique shop nearby... Are ladies really hard to buy for? I'm always happy with books. Lingerie shouldn't be a hardship to buy, either.
  11. It's true that he buys what he needs. His hobbies are reading and hiking. Loves REi but buys himself whatever he wants. I can't imagine he'd need or want a sander... Thanks for the input!
  12. Any suggestions for a tool or whatever he won't have but will love and must have? Are all males hard to buy for, or is it just males in my family?
  13. Hmm, what do you think about a 5-foot, 2-inch woman operating one of those? A bit dangerous, maybe? Especially if I find myself proofreading any words inside the vehicle (can't help it). Sincerely, She Who Wishes She Were Taller and Beefier and a Bit Less Proofready Sometimes
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