AMA’s Business Grammar Workshop

In the past two days, I checked out of work and escaped politics to focus on grammar. The workshop provided me the opportunity to brush up my writing skills. Christy Woods is both a grammar geek and an engaging instructor. She took her time to explain the rules and answer our questions. I have learned so much in two days. If you would like to step up your grammar game, I highly recommend this seminar. I have a lot to unpack, but I had jotted down some notes to remind myself.


Lay: put or place (Remember: Layaway)

I lay the book down.
I laid the book down.
I have laid the book down.

Lie: rest or recline

I lie down.
I lay down.
I have lain down.

Principal vs. principle

Principle only means one thing: foundation or main.


President Obama (capital P)
president of the U.S. (lowercase p)


Well-known author
The author is well known
Carefully considered decision (no hyphen with ly)


It’s all about the sound of the vowel.
A horse
An honest man
An FBI agent

Subject and verb agreement

Use the verb that closer to the subject.
The product and the services are free.
The services and the product is free.

Some of the pie is gone.
Some of the pies are gone.

Someone from the Green Societies is here to see you.

The issue of war, peace, and nuclear holocaust was of paramount important at the conference.

Every one of the students wants no exam.

Neither the dealers nor the manufacturer guarantees this product.

None of the workers have signed the contract.

Neither my friend nor I am ready for the exam.

Between: Preposition

Between you and me (not I).
Between him and her.


Substitute “he” and “him.” If “he” fits, use who. If “her” fits, use whom.

Who/whom ate my sandwich? (He ate my sandwich. Him ate my sandwich.)

Who/whom should I talk to about you? (I should talk to he. I should talk to him.)


Affect: verb (influence)
Effect: noun (result)
Effect: verb (to create, cause) to effect change


e.g., For example (general)
i.e., That is (specific)


Farther: measurable (miles)
Further: unmeasurable

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