10 Common Writing Mistakes Writers Must Know
Some grammatical errors are highly prevalent and can be found online and in printed materials. The most common writing mistakes are covered on this article. You can improve your writing abilities and steer clear of common writing blunders in the future by learning to spot these problems.
You should write something daily, whether it’s an email to a coworker, a text to a buddy, or a report for your supervisor. But do you carefully proofread for errors, or do you skim and hope for the best? Careful reading is preferable because first draft writing errors are unavoidable, according to science. You can’t eliminate grammatical or spelling errors, but you can reduce common writing mistakes. Let’s check out the most common ones.
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10 Most Common Writing Mistakes You Need To Avoid
Even the best writers make a mistake or two along the way. It’s nothing to be ashamed of, but you should try to improve it.
1. Spelling Errors and Typos
Spellcheck frequently misses typos, especially when substituting them with widely used words. Spellcheck won’t flag the error if you type “bare” while describing a “bear” of a project. Compound words are also difficult for it. While it usually picks up on misspelt words like “catastrophe,” it might miss instances when “otherwise” ought to be “otherwise.” These instances show that a manual proofread still comes out on top despite how useful spellcheck and other tools may be.
2. Excessive Punctuation and Commas
Commas and other punctuation can completely alter a sentence’s meaning. For instance, there is a difference between saying, “Let’s eat, Grandpa,” and saying, “Let’s eat Grandpa,” which unintentionally implies cannibalism.
3. Incorrect Verb Tenses
The root, present participle, past, past participle, and third-person singular are the five forms that every verb can take. Take the word “purchase” as an illustration:
The source: Buy purchasing in the present tense past: purchased Past tense: Purchased Buys in the third person singular
Using the proper verb tense ensures that your meaning is completely obvious.
4. Lack of Commas
Mixing up the criteria defining too many and too few commas is common. Because of this, you might overlook commas in lists, including the iconic oxford comma. Although some style manuals advise against using the Oxford comma at the end of a list, most grammatical authorities advise against it. As a result, you market your products as “tomatoes, potatoes, and brinjals” rather than “tomatoes, potatoes, and brinjals.”
5. Pronoun Issues
A pronoun takes the place of a noun, but a vague pronoun reference is worse than if you just used the noun. So too, are incorrect pronouns and pronoun cases. Yes, you can say “she” after the first time you mention Souzie instead of saying her name over and over again. But a typo of “he” instead of “she” can be confusing or downright inaccurate at worst. This can also make things quite unclear if there are multiple subjects in your sentence.
6. Utilizing the Passive Voice
Writers frequently use active voice or passive voice. The verb in your sentence affects the subject when you use the passive voice. “The dessert was created by Raj,” for instance, would be an example of passive voice. You may write this sentence more effectively by using the active voice. It simplifies and shortens sentences. “Raj created the dessert,” in the passive voice, would be the last case.
7. Ignoring Contextual Factors
It would help if you chose whether to write officially or informally, depending on your audience. You should seem formal whether you’re writing an email to a professor, a LinkedIn post, or a newspaper piece. However, if you’re writing a letter to a friend or member of your family, being informal is fine.
8. Faulty Sentence Structure
Every sentence you write needs one subject and at least one verb. Here’s an example of what not to do: “The kids eat lunch in the cafeteria.” The two subjects (“the kids” and “they”) sound confusing next to each other. Instead, you should write, “The kids eat lunch in the cafeteria.” In this sentence, “kids” are the noun and “eat” is the verb.
9. Not Proofreading
There have undoubtedly been moments when you have rushed your work and, instead of checking after typing the final sentence, clicked “submit.” Although we’ve all been there, we all should have proofread. This can help you identify and correct spelling, grammatical, and punctuation errors, as well as improve the readability and enjoyment of your writing.
10. Word Repetition
Similar to when we speak, we may unintentionally repeat words or phrases when we write. For instance, you could say, “I need to draft a meeting agenda today so everyone joining us later knows what we’re doing,” instead of using the word “meeting” three times in a single phrase. That’s preferable to saying, “I must draught the meeting agenda today so that everyone in the meeting is aware of what will happen at the meeting.”
If you’re constantly repeating yourself, try searching online for synonyms. New words keep your writing fresh and exciting.
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How to Fix Most Common Writing Mistakes
You may take a few further steps in addition to the spellcheckers we covered earlier in this post to ensure your work is error-free.
Go on a break.
If you take a break from your work and return to it later or the next day, you can see errors more quickly. You can spot errors that should have been obvious in the first place more readily if you have a clear head and some space from your writing.
Get some fresh eyes to review your text.
Before you submit your writing, it never hurts to have someone else read it. Any problems you may have missed can be seen from a new angle.
Use a template.
What if you could repeatedly use your flawless writing? You can accomplish this using snippets and templates that are customizable. In this manner, you can quickly compose an email or letter. It is simple to use, and templates are free of errors by default.
In this article, we discuss common writing mistakes. Therefore, you must rely on something other than a spell checker to edit your writing.
The greatest advice is to read what you have written or, even better, have someone else read it and make sure it is correct. Print off a copy because most individuals find it simpler to notice faults when reading from a paper copy than from a computer screen.
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