Writing Masterclass: Grammar Tips

It’s been 1 year since I signed up for the most valuable browser extension of my life. Grammarly is a helpful free writers tool that suggests hints and tips much like a word processor (and not like the paperclip- shout out to those who remember the paperclip).

Obviously, there’s no comparison to a real editor, much to my bank balance’s dismay, but Grammarly has improved my use of commas to no end. No longer do my sentences run on end, boring and understandable only to the writer. No longer do I suggest JFK and Stalin are hookers by not using the Oxford comma.

Image result for the oxford comma joke

The extension also offers a regular email explaining your most common mistakes, how much you’ve written that week, as well as your use of vocabulary (apparently this week I had a more extensive vocabulary than 92% of Grammarly users). It offers motivation, whether a placebo or not, seeing my personalised weekly feedback insights some pride in me.

So what does Grammarly pick me up on the most?

  1. Comma After Introductory Phrase

“When an adverbial phrase begins a sentence, it’s often followed by a comma but it doesn’t have to be, especially if it’s short. As a rule of thumb, if the phrase is longer than about four words, use the comma. You can also use a comma with a shorter phrase when you want to emphasize it or add a pause for literary effect.” Grammarly

2. Split infinities

Apparently, this is a majorly frowned upon grammar mistake in the writing industry. Which is awful because I made 23 mistakes of this nature last week alone! A split infinitive is, in laymans terms, when there are extra uneeded words accompanying a simple verb + the word ‘to’. For example:

“I hope to really enjoy the party.”

When really, grammar dictates that you should cut down the unnecessaries, i.e the word ‘really’ in this sentence.

“I hope to enjoy the pary.”

3. Missing comma in a compound sentence

This seems like an obvious mistake to make. I.e don’t separate two nouns (things, objects, people, etc) with a comma.

“Incorrect- Cleo, and her band will be playing at Dockside Diner next Friday.

Correct- Cleo and her band will be playing at Dockside Diner next Friday.” Grammarly

I’m hoping that by sharing my mistakes and development you, dear reader, will also grow with me, learn new things about grammar that you may not have heard before.

So what did you think? Let me know what grammar tips you have in the comments below.

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