6 Common Grammatical Errors Every Writer Should Avoid (With Exercise) - Part 2
Grammatical Errors can be Fatal for a Content Writer.
Yes, it is harsh to say that, but unfortunately, it is a sad truth.
In this era of the "world wide web", people do form an impression about you, on the basis of your grammar and spelling in your articles, blogs, or even your social media feed; despite the fact, they have hardly met you or even had a conversation with you.
“The way you write tells a lot about you.”
A writer is a human being. And human beings are prone to making mistakes. Thus, readers might ignore a spelling error (typographical) or two in your 2000 word blog or article. However, sloppy or silly grammatical errors can be damaging to your credibility and reputation as a writer.
Not to mention, your punctuation and grammatical mistakes will either mislead or confuse your reader. Your message will get diluted or misinterpreted by the same mistakes. Thus, editing and proofreading your article is of paramount importance.
In this hub, we will discuss the common punctuation errors (misuse of comma, semi-colon, and colon) and how to fix them.
Without any adieu, let us hop into the list of 6 Common Grammatical Errors Every Writer Should Avoid (With Exercise) - Part 2 that will help you identify and rectify your mistakes:
1. Missing Comma After Introductory Element
An introductory word, phrase, or clause should always be followed by a comma. This provides the readers with a slight pause after the introductory element. This comma often helps to avoid confusion at the reader’s end.
Simply put, if an introductory word or phrase can modify the entire sentence then put a comma. On the other hand, you can omit the comma if the introductory phrase modifies only a verb or a single element in a sentence.
Practice exercise for Missing Comma After Introductory Elementview quiz statistics
2. Superfluous Comma
A superfluous comma is a very common mistake made by the writers. Here, the commas are placed where they are not needed. A comma is used to join two separate yet related ideas in one sentence. However, if you are using any conjecture then the comma is not always required.
4 types of common comma errors:
- Don’t place a comma in between a subject and a verb.
- Don’t use a comma to separate a verb from its object or complement.
- No comma is needed when two elements are joined by a conjuncture.
- Don’t separate a dependant clause followed by an introductory independent (main) clause with a comma. However, a comma is used only when the dependent clause comes before the introductory independent clause.
See, examples in Pic, the examples for these comma errors are given respectively.
Practice exercise for Superfluous Commaview quiz statistics
3. Comma Splice
A comma splice is a sentence where two different ideas or clauses are joined together with a comma. On the contrary, an appropriate conjuncture, transitional words, or semicolon should have been used in place of a comma.
Comma, period, and semi-colon have their designated jobs to do. You cannot use them interchangeably.
There are three ways to fix a comma splice:
- Add a conjunction
- Change the comma to a semi-colon.
- Make separate sentences.
Practice Exercise for Comma Spliceview quiz statistics
4. Colon Mistakes
Colons are predominantly used after a complete sentence. You use a colon to signal that the words, phrases or clause proves the point of the complete sentence preceding the colon. Mostly, what follows the complete sentence is something that amplifies, explains, illustrates, or clarifies its idea, thought, or message.
In simple words, a colon is used to introduce a list.
Colons can also be used to separate two independent clauses. There are two conditions for using a colon in such a situation:
- The second clause should be related to the first clause (without being vaguely related).
- The emphasis should be on the second clause.
Practice Exercise for Colon Mistakesview quiz statistics
5. No Comma in a Compound Sentence
A comma is used to separate two or more independent clauses in a compound sentence, which is separated by a conjuncture. The sentences that have two or more independent clauses are called a compound sentence.
Some conjunctures you should look for in a compound sentence are as follows: for, and, nor, but, or, yet, and so.
Thus, you should use a comma after the first independent clause, followed by a coordinating conjuncture to separate the second independent clause in the compound sentence.
Practice Exercise for No Comma in a Compound Sentenceview quiz statistics
6. Run-On Sentence
When two independent clauses are joined together in a sentence without a coordinating conjuncture and/or proper punctuation, then the sentence is known as a run-on sentence (see example 1). The length of the sentence does not determine its validity. A short sentence can from a run-on sentence, while a long sentence does not necessarily be a run-on sentence.
A comma splice is a type of run-on sentence, where two independent clauses are joined with just a comma excluding the coordinating conjuncture see example 2.
A run-on sentence can be fixed by using a period or a semicolon followed by a transitional expression (see example 3).
Practice Exercise for Run-On Sentenceview quiz statistics
These common grammatical errors have the potential to change the meaning and connotation of your write-up leaving your readers confused. Try to avoid these mistakes by reading about them. You can take help of various online practice exercise to nurture you grammatical sense and skills.
There is a saying: “No one is perfect.”
On the other hand, there is another saying: “Practice makes a man perfect.”
Personally speaking, I had only one take away from both the saying: practice might make you perfect, but it will let you make fewer mistakes.
On that note, I admit, even I am not perfect. Henceforth, please feel free to point out any grammatical or spelling mistakes you encounter in this hub.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 Arnaba Saha