Thursday, June 23, 2016

Grammar Dos and Don'ts

For those of us who write, whether it be newsletters, blogs, or stories and poems, we're forever checking our grammar. And that's a good thing. We should edit, edit, edit, and revise, revise, revise. Then that's when we need to edit and revise again.

I'm amazed how many times I can go over my stories, send them to Beta readers, edit and revise yet again, publish, and realize there are still mistakes.

Online are tons of articles on dos and don'ts, but know what? Don't get caught up in them. There are too many experts out there telling us all how to write and words not to use and common grammar errors.

I just read Robert L. Bacon's current Perfect Write Newsletter 
that discusses this topic and I agree entirely on what he says. (I do suggest subscribing to his newsletters. They're always full of great info for authors). Basically, you don't have to edit your work based on somebody's article on what you should or shouldn't do.

Robert L. Bacon has a wonderful book on:

Just follow the link to purchase it for $7.99.

When I wrote my first novel 'Always' I followed the advice on every website I could find. Boy, there were lots of reading problems when I was done.

This article in Stumble Upon also talks about useless grammar corrections. We're a more relaxed society today when it comes to reading, so don't get all caught up in 'omg. the author left out a comma'. Read for enjoyment. Write your stories so others can enjoy them.
17 Grammar Mistakes Stumble Upon

I'm not saying don't pay attention to grammar and spelling. I'm just saying ease up a bit and especially write in your style. Be you.

And if you're wondering if 'dos and don'ts' is correct, well, one of my favorite sites is Grammar Girl
From Grammar Girl:
Dos and don'ts is an especially unusual exception. The apostrophe in the contraction don't seems to make people want to use an apostrophe to make do plural (do's and don'ts), but then to be consistent, you'd also have to use an apostrophe to make don't plural, which becomes downright ugly (do's and don't's).
Style guides and usage books don't agree. The Chicago Manual of Style and others recommend dos and don'ts. The Associated Press and others recommend do's and don'ts. Eats, Shoots & Leaves recommends do's and don't's
What Should You Do? Unless your editor wishes otherwise, if you write books, spell it dos and don'ts; and if you write for newspapers, magazines, or the Web, spell it do's and don'ts. If you're writing for yourself, spell it any way you want.

I'd also suggest (Kindle version $4.25):




If you're a truly die-hard must be perfect writing, you can purchase The Chicago Guide to Grammar, Use, and Punctuation for only $45.


Love, Honor, and Respect

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