"J'écris un journal."
Translation:I write a newspaper.
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"journal" difinition acording to Oxford dictionary: 1 - "A newspaper or magazine that deals with a particular subject or professional activity:" 2 - "A daily record of news and events of a personal nature; a diary."
And that's what Journal means in the several romance language. Journal, Jornal, Giornale,
There are especific words to the first meaning tho: "gazeta", "periódico", "boletin", and in english "newspaper"
I think its because Duo has been teaching us 'journal' = newspaper and so expects that answer. My dictionary says 'journal' also = ('intime'=intimate) diary. So unless you are a journalist you write for newspaper; while the rest of us write diarys. Its just Duo giving the simple answer.
Fruits are neither feminine or masculine. Every noun has a gender, and you have to learn the noun with its gender each time. For instance, I learn "moon"= la-lune, not only "lune", and I can remember it, or I imagine the moon to be a girl, but there's no tricks to "guess". Except maybe in some very scarce cases, the word ending by "tion" are feminine.
1) learn each word together with its gender: une pomme, not pomme, un journal, not journal.
2) look up unknown words in a dictionary. n stands for noun/nom, m for masculine/masculin and f for feminine, féminin. So the mark nf after an entry means that it is a feminine noun, nm means that it is a masculine noun.
No. Two similar vowel sounds slur together, so contractions are used to avoid that. Try saying Je ecris fast without slurring it. It's difficult isn't it? Now try saying lots of sentences of that form. It gets more difficult. You find yourself naturally saying it the correct way to avoid stumbling over words.
All exercises are just that: exercises. We do them until we know them, over and over again. You decide how much practice you need for each unit, not Duolingo. And sometimes do we need to go back to earlier units when we discover in later exercises that we actually do not understand enough.
They are not tests, but a kind of exercise, even when forcing you to deal with things you have never seen, heard or got any translation for.
Je/tu écris, Elle/il écrit, Vous écrivez
Here is the full conjugation of the verb écrire: http://french.about.com/od/verb_conjugations/a/ecrire.htm
Hope this helps.
écrivant is very scarce, so, forget about it. There's no continuous tense in French. "En écrivant" is only used when you do 2 actions at the same time by example. If I say: Je mange en écrivant = I eat while I write/while writing. I'm writing is always translated by "J'écris" no other present in French.
this should be either "I write for a newspaper" or "I write in a journal" (if journal is also accepted to be a diary) -- without a prepositional phrase the sentence is incomplete in english.