Review first sentence for incomplete comparisons
Postal letter in a novel (between two high school teens):
Robert, our letters have been getting shorter, since we have been in school, going to practices, and studying. Even when they are short, I enjoy writing to you and hearing from you. Keep the letters coming.
Robert, our letters have been getting shorter, since we have been in school, going to practices, and studying.
An incomplete comparison, in the Grammarly software, is a comparison that is not completed WITHIN the sentence. You said "shorter" and the software wants to know "than what". Because that "than" does not appear in the sentence, the service flags it as a possible error.
For me, an incomplete comparison is acceptable when the "than what" is clearly understood. Sometimes, the "than what" may be somethig discussed in the previous (or following) sentence or paragraph. The comparison is implied from the context. Other times, the comparison is clearly understood by the reader's shared body of cultural knowledge.
In the sample provided, the "shorter than our earlier letters" is clearly implied and need not be made explicit.
When I see the incomplete comparison flag, I believe Grammarly is say you MIGHT have made a mistake rather than you HAVE made a mistake. I reread the text and ask myself if the "shorter, longer, higher, lower, better, etc" comparision is clearly understood from the context.
|link||edited Apr 15 '12 at 00:22 Jeff Pribyl Grammarly Fellow|
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