Updated December 18th, 2020
Common Grammar Mistakes to Avoid in Your Writing
Even if you put a spelling dictionary under your pillow where you use a philologist’s diploma instead of a bookmark, your texts will still contain mistakes and misprints. This is perfectly normal because you are not a robot, but a living person who can be tired, in a hurry, and, of course, wrong.
It is almost impossible to remove absolutely all mistakes from the text — otherwise, the corrector and editor professions would hardly be so high in demand in the world. However, you can cultivate your abilities to make much fewer grammatical mistakes. Together with the WritingCheap service, we offer you to review the most common mistakes and how to solve this problem.
- Double negation. First of all, I would like to note that the use of double negation in English is itself considered a mistake, especially in written speech. According to the rule, there can only be one negative element in a sentence. And although Justin Timberlake sang, “I don’t need no reason, don’t need control,” you should show control in your texts and avoid double negation;
- You will be surprised, but one of the most common mistakes so far is the incorrect verb-subject agreement. Using the singular verb form with a plural subject or vice versa is not a great way to express your ideas;
- Using the incorrect form of words will not make you look smarter. When you misuse except and accept, its and it’s, effect and affects, it may sound the same but still, look ridiculous. Homonyms are tricky, but you have to keep an eye on the correct usage;
- You should also pay special attention to commas in your articles and essays. Writers often miss them in compound sentences or put unnecessary ones when we don’t need them. If you have any doubts about using this punctuation sign, you must consult the basic commas usage rules.
The list of mistakes is endless, and it’s hard to mention all of them. You have to make sure that you analyze all the grammatical drawbacks in your speech and check the corresponding rules. It won’t take a lot of time to google a certain rule just to clarify if your sentence structure is right. Moreover, there are plenty of websites that gather all the rules in one place. You just have to add it to your bookmarks.
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How to stop making grammatical mistakes?
You can enhance your writing skills on your own, using various methods. Choose the most suitable options for you and do it in your spare time. There are very simple but quite effective ways to improve your literacy:
- Let’s recall the wonderful school years? Practice writing interactive dictations, do special exercises, master online simulators, and the results will please you pretty soon;
- Solve crosswords and puzzles, play games, and quizzes related to words. Thus, you will not only have fun but also spend time with value.
- Enroll in courses, go through training, or find a tutor on Skype. The main thing is to get feedback and understand that you are moving in the right direction;
- Create a text file and input your mistakes into it. Look through the document regularly to add new words or cross out those you’ve already learned by heart. Do the same thing with grammar rules and try to take notes to remember them;
- A piece of good old advice — you must read as much as possible and do it carefully and thoughtfully. Believe me, regular training of visual memory will not be in vain. Even without knowing a single rule, sooner or later, you will start to write literately. And if any mistake sneaks into your text, it will be a ridiculous accident, not a pattern. Even if you don’t have a single free minute, you can still read in transport, during the lunch break, in the queue in the store, and even while running in the gym — use all possible opportunities. Read aloud, even if in a whisper. Speaking a text, you’ll learn grammar faster and memorize combinations of lexical units, you’ll be able to “adopt” the author’s style — it’s especially useful for those who want to write interesting and captivating stories;
- No one will learn how to swim standing up. It’s the same with writing. Even if you have nothing to write about, start a diary or blog, write letters to friends (real or fictional), participate in discussions on forums. The main thing is to write something. Improve your skills every day — this is the only way you can achieve results;
- Take it as a rule to learn one new word a day. Attend lectures, read special magazines. Use all possible resources where you can come across unfamiliar words. If you hear a new word on the street, in a cafe, at work, you should take a couple of minutes to find out its meaning and origin. Believe me, it can be a fun activity and a good help to develop your erudition;
- Write down “difficult” words or even whole sentences with a tricky grammar structure in a notebook. You can even create a so-called personal dictionary. Carry the dictionary with you in your bag or pocket and periodically look into it. This way, you will remember words and constructions, in which you often make mistakes;
- People tend to doubt whether they make mistakes when writing a text. Do not spare time; find the right option. And even if you are sure that the text is grammatically flawless, check yourself. You don’t need to keep a dozen dictionaries on your desk — their electronic versions are available on the Internet.
Your work will be rewarded
As you can see, it is not so challenging to be literate, even if you have no philological education. By carefully reading each article, you will eventually learn to evaluate your work objectively and recognize mistakes on an intuitive level. Do not be too lazy to double-check the text from different sources; grind it like a gem.