For non-native speakers of English, conditional sentences can be something of a minefield. They require study and revision and still errors will rear their ugly heads. Sadly, few native speakers of English even realise what a conditional sentence is, let alone whether they are using one or not, what type they are using and why.
Is it okay to mix tenses in the same sentence? Yes, if what you’re saying is in different time zones.
Subject and verb agreement (Lorraine likes grammar, they like being fashionably late) is easy when it’s clear who or what the subject is. But how about “one in ten employees is unhappy at work”?
I’ve been doing lots of editing today and I’m amazed at how many ‘thats’ I deleted without affecting the meaning.
Here are some examples where getting rid of ‘that’ improves the flow.
Active puts the focus on the who or what doing something (the subject) while passive puts the focus on the who or what it’s being done to (the object).
Use passive when you want to soften a harsh statement. “Your bill has not been paid” rather than “You haven’t paid your bill”.
Or a misplaced modifier? Or a dangling participle, as they are sometimes called? More to the point, who cares?
In the sentence “Rushing to catch the bus, Bob’s wallet fell out of his pocket” the modifying clause (rushing to catch the bus) contains the verb participle (rushing).
One dangling participle I see a LOT is the classic “as an experienced plumber/dry cleaner/car mechanic, you can be assured of my first class service”.
What? I’M the experienced tradesperson? I might as well fix it myself then!
Modifiers describe other words or add detail. They need to go next to the words they’re modifying or confusion arises.