Extracted from TSP 158-F-0010, Write in the Army Style) The Army is effective only if information and directions are clearly communicated. In carrying out your military duties, you will write various types of correspondence. This student guide will help you become an effective Army writer. Writing Guide #1: Army Writing Style Writing Guide #2: Steps in the […]

Punctuation — Quotation Marks

Use quotation marks to enclose direct quotations.MacArthur vowed, “I Shall return,” as he left the islands. MacArthur vowed, (quote)”I shall return,“(end quote) as he left the islands. With an interrupted quotation, use quotation marks only around the quoted words.”I heard,” said Amy, “that you passed the course.” (quote)”I heard,“(end quote) said Amy, (quote)”that you passed the course.“(end quote) With […]

Punctuation — The Apostrophe, Dash, Hyphen, and Italics

The Apostrophe The apostrophe forms the possessive case of nouns.Mr. Smith’s (apostrophe – s) car Bob Davis’s (apostrophe – s) boat — singular the Davis’ (s – apostrophe) boat — plural the women’s (apostrophe – s) coats — plural father-in-law’s (apostrophe – s) In hyphenated words, add the apostrophe to the last word. Apostrophes show the omission of letters or numerals.do not — […]

Punctuation — The Colon and Semicolon

The Colon The colon introduces the following: A list, but only after “as follows,” “the following,” or a noun for which the list is an appositive:Each scout will carry the following: (colon) meals for three days, a survival knife, and his sleeping bag. The company had four new officers: (colon) Bill Smith, Frank Tucker, Peter Fillmore, and Oliver Lewis. A […]

Punctuation — Commas

About half of the errors in punctuation are comma errors. This writer’s guide is a quick reference for you, so you won’t make the most common errors with commas. The guide will not cover all of the minute details of commas, just the ones we use most often.   Commas set off independent clauses which […]


1.  Capitalize the first word of every sentence, including quoted sentences.   She (cap) said, “The (cap) work is finished.”   2.  Capitalize the first word of a line of poetry.   “Had (cap) we but world enough, and time, This (cap) coyness, lady, were no crime.”- Andrew Marvell, “To His Coy Mistress”   3.  Capitalize words and phrases used as sentences.   Why?Yes (cap), […]

Expressing Subordinate Relationships

As a writer, you will often find ideas which are clearly related but are not equal in importance. Instead of using a coordinating conjunction which joins ideas of equal importance, you will need to use a conjunction which joins the ideas but expresses the subordinate relationship.   The listing below groups the subordinating conjunctions by […]

The Joining of Sentences

Vocabulary Simple Sentence: A complete sentence that expresses a single thought.   Independent Clause: A simple sentence which is combined with another simple sentence or a dependent clause to form either a compound or complex sentence.   Dependent Clause: A group of words that adds information to or modifies an independent clause. It is not a complete sentence […]

Transition Markers

Clear writing requires that communications be:   “…understandable in a single rapid reading…”   One way to ensure your writing meets this standard is to make your material coherent. That is, ensure your ideas flow together logically.   Coherence means more than just connecting your sentences mechanically. It means that the way you connect your […]

Person in Pronouns

First Person Writers use first person when they are the “person” speaking in the document. First person shows that what is said is the opinion of the writer or the writer as part of a group. The pronouns below show first person.   Subjective Objective Possessive Singular I, me my, mine Plural we, us our, […]