Diction:a lot & all rightFrom the UWF Writing Lab’s 101 Grammar Mini-Lessons Series (#52)
A LOT, ALOT Despite the popular misspelling, a lot is always two words. The preferred usage is to substitute a lot for several or many. Careful writers of standard English avoid the use of a lot altogether.
INFORMAL:A lot of words in the English language are used interchangeably. FORMAL: Many words in the English language are used interchangeably.
The only acceptable spelling is all right – two l’s and two words. Everything seemed all right (not alright) until the argument began. One of my favorite songs from the sixties is “It’s All Right” by the Impressions. ALL RIGHT, ALRIGHT
Let’s Practice! • Sam has a lot/alot of time on his hands. • Jim says he feels alright/all right. • Sara thinks a lot/many people are bad drivers. • Sam has a lot of time on his hands. • Jim says he feels all right. • Sara thinks many people are bad drivers.