Tag Archives: hyphens

ChanteSez … We’re going ‘up’!

18 Sep

Looking up is always the right direction. Here are a few examples of how you can get going the right way when it comes to “up” words. You’ll find that hyphens are often used.

  • mix up: two words as a verb. For example, “I’m going to mix up a batch of cookies.”
  • mix-up: hyphenated as an adjective or noun. For example, “Please pardon the mix-up.”
  • setup: one word as a noun or adjective. As in, “What kind of crazy setup did they have at the event?”
  • set up: two words as a verb. For example, “I need you to set up that meeting, please.”
  • start up: two words as a verb. “Start up the car; I’ll be out in a minute.”
  • start-up: hyphenated as an adjective or noun. “The small start-up was known for being nimble and innovative.”

ChanteSez … Hyphens keep things connected

31 Jan

Quick one today: Words that have a “re” prefix require a hyphen if the compound word starts with “e.”

Think of it this way: “Re” with an “e” needs a hyphen.

A few examples:

  • re-enlist
  • re-enact
  • re-elect
  • re-energize

ChanteSez … Leave the LY alone

8 Aug

When you’re using adverbs that have “ly” at the end, you don’t need a hyphen.

For example:

  • The beautifully dressed woman took center stage.
  • The carefully prepared presentation caught the team’s attention.
  • His compassionately listening ear made her feel better.


ChanteSez … Connect well with yourself

6 Jun

Hyphens are the connectors of punctuation. They join words, they link modifiers, and generally make ideas easier to understand.

Use a hyphen with modifiers (i.e., descriptions) that include the words “self” and “well.”

Some examples:

  • Self-conscious
  • Self-centered
  • Self-assured
  • Well-rounded
  • Well-adjusted
  • Well-dressed

A few other “self” and “well” words that aren’t modifiers, but still take a hyphen:

  • Self-esteem
  • Self-defense
  • Well-being
  • Well-wishers