What happened to teaching basic grammar in school?
Many people seem to think that the possessive apostrophe is optional. Or they use it everywhere, just to be sure.
‘He see’s a problem!’ Gahhhh!
Even if you weren’t taught grammar in school, it is easy to learn. There are many helpful sites on the internet. Like this one. It has lots of sub topics so you can chase down exactly what you want to know.
Or Daily Grammar which was put together by someone even more obsessed than me. Or the Grammar Monster , a free online reference for business writers and students. Or this one where, if you have the internet, you can learn English using their tutorials. Did you know that a ‘Gerund’ is a noun made into a verb by adding ‘ing’.
How about that Google? We say I googled it. I am googling it. I will google it. I have googled it. He is going to google it. The tenses go on and on.
And then there are the tricky words. I am constantly correctly ‘affect’ and ‘effect’. Here is a site with an explanation of commonly confused words. And here is the Research Haven, with a list of words that are commonly mixed up. This is one I correct all the time.
Its is the possessive for it. (The dog ate its supper.)
It’s is the contraction for it is. (It’s another cold day.)
And then there are the times people just accept spellchecker without switching on their brains.
The creator made the earth in seven days, it is the ‘crater’!
The thing is, if you are trying to write you are trying to say something specific. If you get your grammar wrong, it changes the meaning. If you choose the wrong word, it changes the meaning. And that is without even trying to create a distinctive voice, or convey the nuances of character.
It’s been a long day, I’m going to make myself a strong cup of tea, now. Is it just me and I’m being overly obsessive?