A squinting modifier is another type of problem involving its placement in a sentence. The Standard English dialect is very strict with the placement of words within a sentence. Therefore, the placement of a modifier within in a sentence is equally important.
A squinting modifier is determined by the ambiguity of its placement. Generally speaking, the squinting modifier can be found in the middle of a sentence. The problem is when it becomes unclear if the modifier describes that which comes immediately before, or that which comes immediately after. Consider the following sentence:
“Writers who revise their work often can recognize their mistakes.”
The sentence has two possible meanings; writers revise often or they often recognize their mistakes. The best way to correct this sentence is to move the modifier, “often”, so that the sentence becomes clear. Consider the two possible revisions:
“Writers who revise their work can often recognize their mistakes.” Or
“Writers who often revise their work can recognize their mistakes.”
Notice that in both revised sentences, the modifier “often” is placed immediately before the word it modifies.