General Writing and Grammar Help/Go into overdrive


Dear Ted:

What does "to go into overdrive" mean?

Would you please give me some examples of how to use this phrase properly?

Many, many thanks for your kind help.


Dear Paolo:

What does "to go into overdrive" mean?

**** The phrase means to put forth extra effort, usually in an upbeat or excited manner.

Would you please give me some examples of how to use this phrase properly?

go into overdrive
to start working very hard, or to start doing something in an excited way With her exams only two weeks away, she's gone into overdrive and is studying ten hours a day. The tabloid press went into overdrive at the news that the princess was getting married again.


o·ver·drive  (ō′vər-drīv′)
1.  A gearing mechanism of a motor vehicle engine that reduces the power output required to maintain driving speed in a specific range by lowering the gear ratio.

2.  Informal A state of heightened activity or concentration: shifted into overdrive toward the end of the semester.

tr.v. (ō′vər-drīv′) o·ver·drove (-drōv′), o·ver·driv·en (-drĭv′ən), o·ver·driv·ing, o·ver·drives
1.  To drive (a vehicle) too far or too long.

2.  To push (oneself) too far, as in the performance of tasks.


into overdrive
into a condition of hard work and effectiveness The staff went into overdrive, trying to get the software ready for release on Monday. There are times when you think this show is going to shift into overdrive, but it never does.
Usage notes: sometimes used in the form in overdrive: Law enforcement agencies are in overdrive preparing for the summit meeting.

*** Paolo, I am curious about something.  Are you unable to access Google or other sites where you enter a word or phrase and get the definition?  The three examples that I copied and pasted above all come from free online dictionaries.

I wonder if your version of Google is Italian and you are not able to access the English version.

Let me know, OK?


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Ted Nesbitt


I am the bibliographic instruction and reference librarian at a public college. Some members of the English department recommend me to their students. I offer assistance in grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and paragraph development. My master`s thesis concerns William Faulkner`s tragic novels. I formerly taught advanced placement English at two schools in the Philadelphia area.


I have been one of the highest-ranked volunteers in this category for more than a decade.

B. A. and M. A in English; MSIS in Library & Information Sciences; graduate study in philosophy

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