Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Grammar Schmammar. Is It Important? Yes, It Is!

I used Grammarly to grammar check this post because I have so many paid blog posts to write, I don't have time to look stupid.

Yes, folks, it's that time. There were some excellent connections made with many companies at BlogHer '13 in Chicago and I am currently in talks with several of them to review products, receive gift cards to blah-blah-blog about them, and rant and rave (which I already do quite well).

This puts me in a position to announce that I have reached an important benchmark in my writing career. You may do this all the time on your blog, but it is the first time I have received offers for actual monetary compensation or gift cards instead of just product.

More importantly, these companies contacted me. The ones I have contacted and really wanted to blog for (coming close to groveling or begging on hands and knees, saying, "Please, please, please let me represent you!") whom I met at BlogHer, haven't given me the bat of an eyelash, the time of day, or a snowball's chance in hell to prove myself a worthy product hawker.

Whatever! Phooey on them, right? Who needs chocolate and new cars? Don't answer that.

Fortunately, the companies contacting me are ones I am still quite interested in promoting. I won't be promoting or participating in random blog whoring, but taking honest looks at things I would have tried anyway.

The most exciting part is that Grammarly contacted me out of the blue. They weren't at BlogHer. I don't even know how they know I exist, but I knew they existed. I had been to their site before and wanted to use the paid program, but just didn't have the bank for it yet.

Lucky me, I was invited to participate in a free trial! It's perfectly timed because I have a lot to write and a short time to write it. I have many paid/unpaid guest posts and pieces backed up I need to write and Grammarly can save me time by helping me proof them.

I do not have time to look like an idiot.

Let me give you an example of how important spelling and grammar can be. My husband is becoming computer savvy in order to start some side businesses. The other night, I came home from Toastmasters, and the hubs excitedly told me, "Guess what! I bought (popular website domain name) - I can't believe it was available!"

Full well knowing that domain name was probably NOT readily available, I replied, "Did you spell it right?"

The response was something along the lines of, "Oh, crap."

Proofreading, people! Yes, it's that important to know how to spell and how to use the English language properly.

I am admittedly the grammar and spelling Nazi in my home. I'm quite proud of it.

The other night, I got to be Grammarian and Ah-Counter at my Toastmasters meeting. I couldn't believe how many useless words we all used in our speeches. Yes, I even used, "Um..." once while giving my grammarian report to the group. Yes, I noted it to the group at the end of my report. Sigh...

As writers, we are being judged with each letter we type, each sentence we structure, and each phrase we make come to life (or let die a horrible slow death).

Bad spelling and grammar can be deadly to your writing career. What if JannaBobanna123 is actually an agent who just happens to be reading your blog post?  You could be the next big thing, but not if you confuse 'your' with 'you're'.

Repeating these mistakes ad nauseam is unforgivable.

Invest in a good grammar checking program! At the very least, use your built in spell-check religiously. I know I do. Even if I catch an error months later in a post (yes, it's happened rarely), I go back and correct it. It's never too late. You never know who's scrolling through your archives.

Stop! Collaborate and listen... to Grammarly, that is. I just tested and corrected the preceding post material and scored 87 out of 100. It caught 7 errors. I now know that I overuse the word "and" which results in run-on sentences. What? Me? Run-on sentences? Not a shock.

It's like having a cheap editor. The best part is that Grammarly can't argue with you over your plot.

I had one spelling error I hadn't caught and a grammar issue or two I wouldn't have caught. All in all, I'm pleased with my result and would recommend Grammarly to take your writing to the next level. We can all use an extra brain to further our career. I'm impressed that this particular brain is computerized. I'm also a little pissed that it's obviously smarter than I. I am? Me?

Oh, heck. Back to Grammarly...


  1. Hi Cindy - in addition to blogging, I work in public relations so good grammar is so important is all parts of my life! Good, informative post, good luck with everything!!! Lisa

  2. Good info Cindy. I just published a post yesterday that I had to go back and correct (whomever or whoever?) I had to look it up and I was sure I was using it wrong...I looked like an ass in front of many for a few hours until I researched the usage of the two words. Oh well, we're only human and that's why a computer program like this would be great.

  3. So you know what's funny? How we've been able to combine writing as if we're talking ALONG WITH good grammar. That's what I pride myself on. Errr...that is on which I pride myself? ;-)

  4. Congrats on your exciting news! If you like Grammarly I probably would too. But I worry about it since I do intentionally use incomplete sentences. But I'd be lying to myself if I believed it wouldn't catch a few unintentional ones too!