Because blogging is mostly about writing, putting your best work out there is important. That means doing your best to use correct grammar, spelling, and punctuation.
Does making an error here or there make you a bad blogger? Absolutely not. In fact, before you read this post I’d like you to consider the following things before judging the mistakes of others:
- English might not be their first language
- They may have a disability such as dyslexia that affects their writing
- The post could have been written on a mobile device and the writer fell victim to auto correct
- They may not have been lucky enough to receive a formal education
Using correct grammar, spelling, and punctuation doesn’t mean that your blog has to sound like a boring academic research paper. In fact, Melissa over at Blog Clarity has a great post on how to break the rules you learned in English class.
Blogging is essentially a conversation, so you want to write as if you are speaking to your readers. For example, words like ain’t and y’all would cause you to lose points with your English professor, but they are perfectly fine in blogging if they add personality to your blog and don’t distract the reader from your point.
How poor grammar, spelling, and punctuation hurt your blog
- The point you’re trying to make is lost
- Your reader is annoyed
- You appear unprofessional and sloppy to those who want to hire you
Now that you understand why it’s important, here are common grammar, punctuation, and spelling mistakes made by bloggers.
4 grammar goofs seen on blogs
A punctuation situation
From urbandictionary.com:bangorrheaOverusing exclamation points in a vain and failing attempt to make your writing sound more exciting. Trying to put more “bang” in your prose, but looking instead like you have exclamation point diarrhea.
Pinterest is notorious for bangorrhea, but I suspect it comes from well-meaning bloggers. “OMG!!! Shut the front door!! Best chicken recipe ever! Soooo good!! Must try!” I understand that you’re excited about your newest recipe or book review, but sticking a bunch of exclamation points into your writing isn’t going to make me excited about it.
Want to make me excited about your post? Make me laugh, tell me an interesting story, or show me how your craft, tutorial, or recipe is going to benefit me.
Ah, the apostrophe. So useful, yet so abused. Apostrophes are meant to be used to indicate when letters are missing in a contraction or to show ownership, but they often get shoved into any word that ends in an s.
Correct usage example: The dog’s bone is missing.
Incorrect usage example: All dog’s go to Heaven.
If you aren’t sure if a word requires an apostrophe or not, it’s better to skip adding the apostrophe.
P.S. The Oatmeal’s guide to using apostrophes is pretty much the best thing ever.
Punctuation outside quotation marks in American English
In American English, punctuation belongs outside quotation marks.
Correct example: When asked how he completed the assignment, Brandon replied, “Like a boss.”
Incorrect example: When asked how he completed the assignment, Brandon replied, “Like a boss”.
10 words commonly misspelled by bloggers
- Calander when you mean calendar
- Loose when you mean lose
- Stationary when you mean stationery
- Catagory when you mean category
- Defiantly when you mean definitely
- Privlige when you mean privilege
- Restarant when you mean restaurant
- Seperate when you mean separate
- Defence when you mean defense
- Grammer when you mean grammar
While no one speaks or writes any language perfectly, taking the time to proofread your work makes a huge difference in whether your post is read and understood or unread and misunderstood. We hope you found this post helpful.