San Miguel Editorial Services

Writing and editing for impact and sales.

Anne’s Answers Q&A

Anne’s Answers is a free service that answers your writing questions via email. Here are some of the questions we’ve answered so far:

Project: Short story for publication in a magazine
Q: Is it “Scotch” or “scotch” in this usage? “…an alarming amount of Johnnie Walker Scotch.”
A: No, scotch isn’t capitalized here because it has become a generic term for a certain type of malt liquor—but you were correct in capitalizing the brand name. Another phrase often capitalized when it shouldn’t be is french fries.

Project: Retail product hang tag
Q: We make a plastic zipper pouch and want to describe how to use it. We said, “I use one for all my power cords, ipod and small camera, one for small tools, one for pens, sticky notes, all the small“stuff” that needs to be corralled,…” Is it correct to use “corralled” in this context?
A: Yes, corralled is used (and spelled) correctly! You could also simplify the language to all the small “stuff” you want to find quickly & easily or all the small “stuff” you need on hand. Check to see if there’s a space between “small” and “stuff” because I don’t see one. Also, iPod has a capital “P” within the word.

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