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As a copywriter, proofreader and editor, I tend to have a dictionary by my side when I’m writing or doing other work for clients. I’m not infallible and there are some words in our English language that can trip you up often. Here’s my list:

Double letters

Accommodation: How many times do we see ‘accomodation’? Makes my blood run cold.
Millennium: ‘ll’ AND ‘nn’
Personnel: ‘nn’

S, not c

Consensus: Usually, I have to correct this after I’ve typed ‘concensus’. I’m getting better…
Supersede: As above

How you spell it, not how you say it.

Barbecue: Not barbeque, despite ‘Barbeques Galore’
Repertoire: Not ‘repetoire’
Separate: Not ‘seperate’
Subpoena: Try filling in a crossword clue with ‘supoena’ and you’ll never forget this one.

Weird and wonderful

Desiccate: Not ‘dessicate’, although we so want to use the ‘ss’.
Gauge
Indict
Impugn
Limousine: Not, as I see often, ‘limuosine’
Pronunciation: Not ‘pronounciation’
Memento: ‘Momento’ is Italian, it means something different – and we’re writing in English.
Weird: If you write ‘wierd’, it will look weird.

What words are on your watch list?

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