Posted by: episystechpubs | June 16, 2015

Editor’s Corner: Inaugural vs. Annual

Today’s article is dedicated to those of us who get peevish when we hear someone use the term first annual. Take a second or two to think about it: if it is the First Toadstool Licking Contest of Jefferson County, that means this contest didn’t exist until this year. Annual means that something occurs once a year; therefore, if this contest is just occurring for the first time, it cannot yet be a yearly event. Of course, if you have so much fun at the event that you want it to become a yearly thing, then you can have a Second (or Third or Fourth) Annual Toadstool Licking Contest. It can go on as long as you’d like on an annual basis (unless the toadstools are poisonous).

If you haven’t had an event yet, but you plan on creating one that goes on each year—there’s a word for that. It’s not the first annual, it is the inaugural event. According to Merriam-Webster, one of the definitions of inaugural is “happening as the first one in a series of similar events.” So, next time you’re ready to start some kind of annual event, show us grammar geeks and language lovers that you know what you are talking about and enjoy your Inaugural Calzone Contest or your Inaugural Ventriloquist Convention and enjoy annual events after that.

Kara Church

Technical Editor, Advisory

619-542-6773 | Ext: 766773

Symitar Documentation Services

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