so (1). Today: Beginning Sentences with. Like “And” and “But,” “So” is a good word for beginning a sentence. Each of these three is the informal equivalent of a heavier and longer conjunctive adverb (“Additionally,” “However,” and “Consequently” or “Therefore”). Rhetoric, not grammar, is what counts here. The shorter word affords a brisker pace — e.g.: o “After more than tripling the magazine’s newsstand sales, she was hired by Hearst Magazines to start the U.S. version of Marie Claire . . . . The 1994 start-up became the most successful in the company’s history. So she was picked to succeed Brown.” Janny Scott, “New Cosmo Editor’s Life Is a Page Right Out of the Magazine,” San Diego Union-Trib., 1 June 1997, at D5. o “The world they’ve been living in has been broken, says he. So they cling to football: an old ritual to get them through New Year’s Day.” William Green, “The Sky Was Falling,” Forbes, 2 June 1997, at 208. Next: For “very” and in “so therefore.”
Quotation of the Day: “Transitional terms cannot be forced into loose, badly composed writing. They are too definite for loose thinking. If you can change an ‘and’ to a ‘but’ without much damage, there is something wrong with your English.” Henry Seidel Canby, Better Writing 66 (1926).