Write for Business - Blog

UpWrite Press understands the importance of writing skills in business: We're business people just like you. On this blog you'll find tips to improve your writing, along with topics of interest to our staff.

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    Using the Right Word: vain, vane, vein

    Monday, September 20, 2010

    Vain (adjective) can mean "valueless" or "fruitless" or "conceited." In vain means "to no avail." Vane (noun) is an instrument that shows which way the wind blows. Vein (noun) refers to a blood vessel or an ore deposit.

    The weather vane twirled about during the spring storm.
    A rich silver vein was discovered beneath the town.
    We searched in vain for the disks.

    (From Write for Business, 2nd edition, page 301, and Proofreader's Guide PDF, page 51)