As I wrote this book, I followed For Dummies traditions. I also made some patterns myself. Every time I introduce a grammar term, I italicize and explain it. If I write noun, for example, I tell you a noun is the name of a person, place, thing, or idea. Do not be afraid! In Basic English Grammar For Dummies, I use very few grammar terms. As often as possible, I explain what you need to know in normal, nonteacher language. I also underline some words or phrases that you should pay close attention to.
To help you pick up important points quickly, I frequently place information in lists. Every item in a list begins with a little check mark.
The key idea appears in boldface (extra-dark type). Examples illustrate every rule. Keep an eye out for these examples, centered alone on a line. If I mention an idea but do not explain it immediately, I direct you to a chapter that contains more information.
Although this book focuses on grammar, I could not resist throwing in some vocabulary builders. A strong vocabulary makes your writing more interesting. Look for gray boxes, called sidebars, if you want to learn new words. If your vocabulary is already in good shape, ignore the gray boxes and go right to the text.