Podcast E1: Using grammar to be a more effective writer

In the first episode of Coffee, Tea or Something Stronger?, Clare Lynch discusses grammar and writing with Professor Mike McCarthy, Emeritus Professor of Applied Linguistics in the School of English at the University of Nottingham in the UK. In their chat, Mike talks about his view of grammar as a tool to get your point across - rather than a set of strict rules designed to constrain you.

Tune into this episode now to hear about:

  • Why there isn't a just one grammar of English

  • The problem with following the ‘rules’ of grammar

  • The differences between spoken and written grammar

  • The importance of designing your writing for your audience

  • The peaks and valleys of writing - what a good piece of writing looks like

  • How to use “What” clauses to bring out your main point

  • How to get started when you sit down to write

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About Professor mike Mccarthy

Professor Mike McCarthy is one of the world's leading authorities on the English language, having spent the past 50 (yes, 50!) years researching, teaching and writing about it.

Mike has taught all over the world and is the author of more than 50 books and 109 academic papers dealing with the research and teaching of the English language. For more information, visit Mike's website


Mike’s new book

A guide to the most common errors made by learners of English, based on Mike’s notes and observations from his 50-year career

Updated edition

Mike’s handy A-Z guide of the most common queries people have about using English.