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Old 01-04-2011, 04:49 PM   #31
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*grin* good thing our kids don't read these forums or they'd be calling us old fogeys.
You're an old fogey
Here's a link relevant to your interests
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Old 01-04-2011, 04:58 PM   #32
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You're an old fogey
Here's a link relevant to your interests
Thank you. That link helped me out alot.
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Old 01-04-2011, 05:16 PM   #33
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Are contractions hard for readers if English isn't their first language?
It depends on their level of English comprehension I guess. However, I would have thought that anyone willing and able to embark on a novel in a foreign language would already be quite proficient in said language and hence unfazed by such things as contractions.
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Old 01-04-2011, 06:06 PM   #34
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I can only speak for myself here. I have no problem with contractions, although things like "I'd've" and "wouldn't've", disrupt my reading flow a bit because they are relatively uncommon.

What bugs me, personally, far more than contractions are people who can't keep their tenses straight or constantly mix up their homophones. In my opinion, if you can't keep things like they're/their/there, here/hear, or sole/soul straight, and you can't be bothered to employ an editor who can, you have no business inflicting your writing on the world.
Same here. English is my second/third language and contractions are perfectly natural to me.

But as also mentioned on page one, measurements are an entirely different beast. Most (Mainland-) Europeans know what a yard or an inch is but it still interrupts the reading flow.
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Old 01-04-2011, 11:28 PM   #35
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Sadly, I think that those of us who care about language in all its beauty are a dying breed. But perhaps every generation thinks that .
Yup. Consider what Shakespeare might have thought about our current usage of what we call 'correct English'.

'Boi' is an interesting one... it's a whole different word, when I see it used, to 'boy'. Derived from 'boy', obviously, but definitely not interchangeable.

Back to contractions... I wouldn't think that the basic contractions would slow an experienced ESL reader too much. Depends on your market, I guess.
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Old 01-05-2011, 02:19 AM   #36
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The Romance languages and German have contractions; English isn't alone in its usage of contractions.
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Old 01-05-2011, 02:26 AM   #37
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Wow, thank you. Why is "lb" the abbreviation for "pounds"?

By the way, pounds/Pfund we use in Germany, too, but exactly as half a kilogram.
As we did in Denmark in the 'olden days'...

I was shocked, when I came to Australia and found that a pound was not a pound...
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Old 01-05-2011, 02:45 AM   #38
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Yup. Consider what Shakespeare might have thought about our current usage of what we call 'correct English'.

'Boi' is an interesting one... it's a whole different word, when I see it used, to 'boy'. Derived from 'boy', obviously, but definitely not interchangeable.

Back to contractions... I wouldn't think that the basic contractions would slow an experienced ESL reader too much. Depends on your market, I guess.
We learn the normal contractions, but the ones, where there're 3 words in one, would probably have me 'spelling them out'...
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Old 01-05-2011, 03:54 AM   #39
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I'm a big fan of Charles Dickens' books, and some of the dialogue he writes in his books, where he attempts to reproduce the sound of local dialects, has me scratching my head on occasions, I have to admit .
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