ChanteSez … I could use a million bucks!

I don’t know about you, but I could use a million bucks. Now here’s a question: Is there a difference between a million bucks and $1 million?

If you’re thinking that one is wild game, I guess you’re technically correct.

But I’m thinking more in terms of colloquialisms such as “bucks” and “ducats” vs. dollar-dollar bills.

When you’re referring to actual, countable dollar amounts, use the dollar symbol ($). Another tip: Don’t double up on the dollars. There’s no need to repeat “dollars” if you’re using the dollar sign. (Wrong: I could use $1 million dollars.)

If you’re generalizing or making grand statements, drop the dollar sign and use whatever slang term you want.

Here are a few examples:

The foundation raised more than $1.5 million as a direct result of her leadership.

“This deficit situation is beyond my imagination. I can’t even think of what a billion trillion dollars looks like.”

The price for a new Porsche Panamera ranges from $78,100 and $161,100 depending on the features.

Now let’s go make millions!

ChanteSez … Make sure to get your quotes right

It’s one thing to know when to use quote marks. It’s another to know when to use single or double quote marks.

In short, there’s no need to “double up” on quotes if you’re presenting or hearing info for the first time.

Here’s what I mean. When you’re directly quoting someone in an article, use double quote marks.

In her last blog post on the subject, Chante said, “Whatever punctuation was necessary to indicate what someone said — or how they said it — should go within the quote marks.”

In essence, this is the first time you’re presenting the quote.

A memory aid: double quote marks = direct quote.

Conversely, if the person you’re quoting is quoting someone else, use single quotes. The idea here is that you’re hearing something second-hand.

Another way to remember it: single quote marks = second-hand.

“The last show I went to, I heard a few people saying, ‘I feel like such an old hip-hop head!’ I could definitely understand where they were coming from.”