JS Tip 259: From the Writing Workshops: “Good” versus “Well”


We appreciate your questions and suggestions.

A Discussion

Robin Hamilton asked us to explore “good” versus “well.”

For two simple words, they’re full of controversy. A “Good versus well” search on the internet yields over over four million hits. Over four million.

We’ll treat this narrowly. Your friend asks, “How are you?” You can answer—

     “I’m well, thank you,” if you’re healthy and happy.


     “I’m good, thank you,” if you haven’t robbed any banks lately.

Well refers to health; good refers to moral excellence. Most people respond about their health and wellness.

Are there exceptions? Sure. That’s why we said we’d address this narrowly.

Howzat? Does that help? We’re grateful to Robin for the question.  

An Offer

Kattie Cox asked if we could put together a comma guide. So we did. A one-page PDF with eleven comma principles. Suitable for framing.

If you’d like a copy, let us know. Hit “Reply,” ask for The Comma Tip Sheet, and we’ll send it by return email. We’re grateful to Kattie for the suggestion.

Let us know your questions and suggestions. Seriously. We love this stuff.