Re: many efforts

Subject: Re: many efforts
From: Bill Burns <WBURNS -at- VAX -dot- MICRON -dot- COM>
Date: Mon, 22 May 1995 08:09:32 MDT

Douglas asks about the use of "efforts" in the following:

>>many years of EFFORTS

In this phrase, "effort" is used as a collective noun, so it should not be
plural. "[M]any years of patronage" (from your second problem) uses exactly
the same construction. However, since "patronage" is already collective, few
people have problems selecting the correct form. The chair should concede and
use the collective form "effort."

Douglas also asks about the preposition in the following:

>>"...the best way to reciprocate with our customers for their
many years of patronage..." Is this preposition necessary?

In my mind, the contruction itself is the problem. I'd make "reciprocate"
transitive:

...the best way to reciprocate our customers' many years of patronage.

or

...the best way to reciprocate our customers' patronage. [Why mention
"many years" at all here?]

My opinions--yours may vary.

Bill Burns *
Assm. Technical Writer/Editor * LIBERTY, n. One of Imagination's [sic]
Micron Technology, Inc. * most precious possessions.
Boise, ID *
WBURNS -at- VAX -dot- MICRON -dot- COM * Ambrose Bierce


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