Grammar: Booking Through Thursday

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In honor of National Grammar Day … it IS “March Fourth” after all … do you have any grammar books? Punctuation? Writing guidelines? Style books? More importantly, have you read them? How do you feel about grammar in general? Important? Vital? Unnecessary? Fussy?

Bad grammar drives me crazy.  I can see my family bracing for a diatribe now.  🙂  Grammar is very important.  It helps to ensure that what I’m trying to write is what you’re reading.  Little things make a big difference sometimes.  Some grammar rules get a little too fussy though, and can obscure more than they clarify, like when you try to rewrite a sentence so that it doesn’t end in a dangling preposition.  “For which it was intended” is just more awkward than “It was intended for,” grammar be damned.  That’s all I’ll say about that though, mainly because I’m afraid that someone will come along and say, “It’s funny you should say that, because I’ve noticed that you consistently make this grammatical error….” 

My spoken grammar is a whole different story.  Can I just say that I’m a Southerner and leave it at that?  I might know better, but that doesn’t stop me from pulling out, “I ain’t got no” on occasion.

I own a Chicago Manual of Style, but I don’t actually pull it out too frequently.  It’s too easy to just Google whatever I’m not sure about.  I’ve read Eats, Shoots and Leaves, but thought it was pretty basic and I didn’t really find the snarky humor all that funny.

How do you feel about grammar?

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  1. Thanks for the quote, Rose!

    Bookalicious, I would never have guessed that English is your second language!

    Alison, I'm definitely guilty of "um" and "like." My brain has usually raced on ahead of my speech, and I have to fill the time while I try to get back on track. 😉

    That's a great point about exceptions, everybookandcranny.

    Thanks for the link, PolishOutlander!

  2. Speaking and writing are two different things — you are so right! And as for avoiding the dangling preposition, no one said it better than Winston Churchill: "That is nonsense up with which I shall not put."

    Here's my answer on Rose City Reader.

  3. I can definitely be picky about grammar. I'm a stickler for thje correct usage of their/they're/there. It drives me nuts when people use it incorrectly. My husband is *quite* picky about the whole who/whom debacle and I tease him about it constantly. Here are some people though that are very passionate about grammar in everything:
    Saw a news report about them about two years ago.

  4. I have always been a grammar snob. Writing has seemed to help my speaking grammar. I don't say "um" or "like" nearly as much as some of my adult friends do. The teenagers' "like" drives me as crazy as it drove my parents back in the 80s*ahem*90s.

    I have on my shelf: Warriner's English Grammar and Composition – Second Course. I swiped it from high school english class (my teacher probably saw me and was proud) and refer to it at least once a month for those pesky rules I still get confused.

    In Stephen King's On Writing, he says that by owning and referring to this text, I'm part of the club. 🙂

  5. Your answer is sweet 🙂 many times I say thank goodness for my best friend which is a reading specialist, she chould talk on thi subject forever.

    Got to love you grammar queens, lol

    My response

  6. Ooh, great post! I am very, very passionate about grammar too and I cannot tolerate grammatical mistakes, especially in like official texts or banners or something, I just can't take those things seriously if they're not grammatically correct. When I talk to friends or something, I don't pay all that much attention to grammar, but when I'm writing something, then things just come naturally (grammar-wise, hehe). However, English is my second language so I know my grammar isn't perfect, but at least I tryyy! 😉

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