5 Basic Grammatical Errors that Kill Your Writing
Anyone who hopes to make a name for themselves writing needs to have a firm grasp of basic English grammar. Even the occasional mistake can kill your traffic and destroy your credibility as a writer. Grammatical errors cause your writing to be choppy and difficult to read. It is a sure fire way to make people leave your site and go somewhere else. Make sure that you are avoiding these five basic grammatical errors that kill your writing.
1. Your vs. You’re
It is astonishing how many people make this mistake, and if you have any grasp of the English language, then it will make you flinch every time you see someone confuse the two. “Your” is used to show possession whereas “you’re” is the contracted form of “you are.” Mistaking the two can cause a lot of confusion for readers.
2. It’s vs. Its
Mixing up “it’s” and “its” is another common mistake that is easily avoided simply by thinking about what your want to say. “Its” is another word showing possession while “it’s” means “it is.” Just like “your” and “you’re,” mixing these words up can cause a lot of confusion for readers and can make them give up on reading your writing.
3. There vs. Their vs. They’re
One of the quirks of the English language is this particular homophone. Three different meanings, three different spellings, but the same pronunciation mean that writers screw up these words all the time. Unfortunately, this basic mistake is one that everyone should have gotten over in third grade. Continuing to make this error is awful for professional writing. Simply taking the time to carefully think about your writing and the uses of each of these words can help fix the problem. And let’s not forget about proofreading.
4. Affect vs. Effect
This is one of those mistakes that makes people stop and go “wait, what?” Unfortunately, it is also a mistake that is more difficult to remember not to make. Most writers will tell you that they need to stop and think for a second before using one of these words to make sure they are using the right one. To keep them straight, remember that “effect” is a noun whereas “affect” is a verb.
5. The Dangling Participle
One of the most damaging errors to your writing is the dangling participle. Not only does it disrupt the flow of your writing, but it can also make it impossible for readers to know what you are trying to say. Catching dangling participles is one of the reasons proofreading is essential to writing.
Anyone can make a typo, but making one of these five basic grammatical errors is a sure way to lose traffic and kill your writing. If you are a writer, then it is essential that you are aware of these common mistakes and you make sure that your writing is free of them.