1. Joules03
    Offline

    Joules03 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2010
    Messages:
    102
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    BC, Canada

    Pet Peeve

    Discussion in 'The Art of Critique' started by Joules03, Jul 25, 2010.

    I've been noticing this a lot lately, in the review room and also on the Short Story Competition, that there are spelling/grammar/punctuation errors all over the place. I'm not trying to sound like a snob, because we do make mistakes and not everyone has great grammar (myself included). I just feel like it is a lack of respect from the writer to the reader. It is MUCH harder to read a story when it is hasn't been edited at all. A simple read-through and quick edit before posting would make a huge difference.

    And in my opinion, simply saying that you know it needs to be edited for spelling/grammer is not enough. If you don't have the patience to go through it yourself, why should anybody else even read it?

    Sorry - had to get that off my chest.
     
  2. Halcyon
    Offline

    Halcyon Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2010
    Messages:
    510
    Likes Received:
    23
    Location:
    England
    "And in my opinion, simply saying that you know it needs to be edited for spelling/grammer is not enough. If you don't have the patience to go through it yourself, why should anybody else even read it?"

    Sorry. I'm definitely not meaning to be unkind here, but I just love the irony of the fact that you've mis-spelt "grammar" in there. That definitely appeals to my sense of humour. ;)
     
  3. minstrel
    Offline

    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2010
    Messages:
    8,723
    Likes Received:
    4,821
    Location:
    Near Los Angeles
    Spelling error or not, I'm with Joules03 on this. If we're writers, we should have enough respect for language to use it correctly, or at least make a serious effort to do so.
     
  4. untalented311
    Offline

    untalented311 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2010
    Messages:
    101
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    ohio
    hahahaha
     
  5. Evelyanin
    Offline

    Evelyanin Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2009
    Messages:
    160
    Likes Received:
    10
    I do understand that there are some writers out there who make no effort to edit their work. However, I do know that there are some exceptions. I've noticed that there are quite a few people out there who do not have english as their first language. They have probably moved here from another country, where publishing in their own language might be very difficult. Writing in english is a learning experience for them, and the blatant grammar and spelling mistakes that we see may not be so obvious to them.

    I do appreciate when these people mention that english isn't their first language, because we can then help them with those editing problems. If they don't mention it, then I find people can be very critical, telling them to edit first. Chances are some of the work has already been edited by someone who did the best they could under the circumstances.

    For myself, english is not my first language either, but I believe that I have lived in an english speaking country long enough not have any excuse. In my writing, it is hard to see any other nationality than an english one, though speaking is quite a different matter. Mistakes do creep in once in a while, yet I was fortunate to move to Canada when I was young, so most kids my age still had to learn the grammar fundamentals.

    In the end, I just want to say, if english is still fairly new to you, don't be afraid to mention it. Others will be more willing to help, instead of writing you off as someone who is too lazy to edit. Having to keep two languages separate while writing can be difficult, but even this obstacle can be overcome on the road to being published.
     
  6. Cogito
    Offline

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    35,935
    Likes Received:
    2,043
    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    Actually, it's not so much the ones for whom English is not their first language. It's the ones who come out and say something like:
     
  7. Evelyanin
    Offline

    Evelyanin Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2009
    Messages:
    160
    Likes Received:
    10
    Ha ha, if only everyone would identify themselves. It would be a lot easier if the ones with grammar/spelling problems would identify themselves as such, as well as give a reason why. Then we could just skip the rest of the ones that have horrific grammar, and write them off as "Lazy".


    Edit: Another thing, I can't count how many times I have seen this topic brought up. Unless there are some drastic rules added, it won't change. You are going to run into it again and again and again. Perhaps a "Bad Grammar Frustration, Need to get this off my chest" section should be added...
     
  8. Joules03
    Offline

    Joules03 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2010
    Messages:
    102
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    BC, Canada
    Yup, we all make mistakes. So grammar or grammer, whoops. It happens.

    But thanks Cogito, for your comment, because that was what I was referring to rather than the English as a second language thing.
     
  9. untalented311
    Offline

    untalented311 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2010
    Messages:
    101
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    ohio
    The thing that Cogito said was really really really funny. I once wrote a short story when I was under the influence, the sad thing was that it was fantastic, of course it needed work but itt was a great story.

    But I read a story recentely where the girl said that she was sixteen and that she wasn't aware of the simple mistakes she was making and I'm not sure how I feel because I'm sixteen yet I take the effort to try to make my writing passable. I'm not a straight A student, nor do I consider myself paticularly intelligent yet I try to capitalize the beginning of sentences, and put apostrophes where they clearly belong!

    I guess my question is: How do you tell when the author is, or is not, making the solid effort to try to make their piece readable, or is just lazy.
     
  10. Evelyanin
    Offline

    Evelyanin Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2009
    Messages:
    160
    Likes Received:
    10
    What you should look for is consistency. If the writer is making the same mistake, in the same places, then it might be legit.
    If the writer is making different mistakes all over the place, particularly typo's, then chances are they just didn't attempt to edit.

    For example, here is what I sometimes do. When I want to write "they", I sometimes miss the "y", making it "the". Since "the" is an actual word, the spell checker will miss it. If I run over it, I usually catch the mistake, though there are times when I will still miss it the second time around. If someone tries to edit their own work, typo's like this will be rare.

    Another Example: I have this problem. It involves me changing my mind mid sentence. So often sometimes my sentences will seem appear like this. This should be caught if you edit your own work.
     
  11. Joules03
    Offline

    Joules03 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2010
    Messages:
    102
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    BC, Canada
    I agree, Evelyanin, and I will try to remember to watch for the legit ones.
     
  12. Cogito
    Offline

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    35,935
    Likes Received:
    2,043
    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    Also, take a look at whta kinds of spelling errors you see. If it;s a misspelling like teh or tje instead of the, you know they didn't even run it through a spell checker, whereas mistakes like loose instead of lose, it could either be lack of proofreading or the writer might not be clear on the difference.
     
  13. untalented311
    Offline

    untalented311 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2010
    Messages:
    101
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    ohio
    Then the person that I read clearly did not bother to go through spellcheck because she refused to capitalize anything at all. I ran her story through spellcheck for her, in case she didn't have it, but there is no way that she could have even tried the lightest edit. It was very frustrating. Thank you for answering my question
     
  14. Evelyanin
    Offline

    Evelyanin Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2009
    Messages:
    160
    Likes Received:
    10
    Exactly, the second part particularly applies to me. I often need to think before I write words like choose and chose.
     
  15. untalented311
    Offline

    untalented311 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2010
    Messages:
    101
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    ohio
    My biggest flaw is writing things that sound like the word that I'm trying to spell, which completely ruin my sentences and never come up on spellcheck. It's terrible. They make no sense whatsoever. Know, instead of no, since, instead of sense.
     
  16. minstrel
    Offline

    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2010
    Messages:
    8,723
    Likes Received:
    4,821
    Location:
    Near Los Angeles
    Sorry, Evelyanin, but here in this pet peeve thread I have to mention that one of my pet peeves is when people form plurals using apostrophes. The plural of "typo" is "typos", not "typo's".

    I see this kind of error more and more these days. Does it bother anybody else?
     
  17. untalented311
    Offline

    untalented311 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2010
    Messages:
    101
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    ohio
    My father was reading one of my stories the other day and came across the usage of a possessive apostrophe, like Lucky's basket, I don't know exactly what it was, all I know is that it was possessive and he maintained that there was no such thing as a possessive use of an apostrophe, and then he asked me who had been teaching me that. I don't know why but that made me think of that.
     
  18. minstrel
    Offline

    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2010
    Messages:
    8,723
    Likes Received:
    4,821
    Location:
    Near Los Angeles
    Wow! How does your father write possessives?
     
  19. Joules03
    Offline

    Joules03 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2010
    Messages:
    102
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    BC, Canada
    minstrel - yes, I notice, but I don't hold it against people. I used to think that poor spelling was a sign of unintelligence - and then I met my husband. He is one of the smartest guys I know, but he can't tell which from witch. I have to edit every professional email he sends. So I guess it's not really a pet peeve for me. It really just bothers me when people don't even TRY, and expect me to slug through their work. Ugh.
     
  20. untalented311
    Offline

    untalented311 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2010
    Messages:
    101
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    ohio
    I know! I have no idea how on earth he writes his possessives, all I know is that he must be doing them incorrectly. Then I went online to show him that I was right, and he still said it was wrong. He is the most stubborn man in the world.
     
  21. Evelyanin
    Offline

    Evelyanin Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2009
    Messages:
    160
    Likes Received:
    10
    Oops, my bad. I guess I've never noticed that before. It seems my reasoning behind it is that typo is a shortened form (typography or something?) So I add the apostrophe. Even I mix things up once in a while.

    Edit: I did a bit of research, so here is what I found out.
    According to dictionary.com, "typo" is an informal way of saying, typographical error. Officially, typo- is a combining form representing type in compound words: typography, typology.

    To me, words like "typos","condos", and "promos", look weird because you don't pronounce it like it's spelled. Then again, whole words like solo wouldn't make sense either.

    Ha ha, now it gets more confusing. Tomato, potato, buffalo, and echo all have -es when they go plural. Yet ghetto and armadillo only have a single -s. Apparently sometimes you just have to know what the plural is.
     
  22. minstrel
    Offline

    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2010
    Messages:
    8,723
    Likes Received:
    4,821
    Location:
    Near Los Angeles
    English is so full of irregularities it drives people nuts.
     
  23. JessaNova
    Offline

    JessaNova Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2010
    Messages:
    126
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    Florida
    I definitely agree. When people ask me to review their work, it's really irritating to see a bunch of errors. I guess it's not really 'irritating', but it definitely takes that emotion away from reading the story. It's hard to get lost in something when you have to re-read what they just wrote because it's spelt wrong.
     

Share This Page