Writing Pet Peeves

Top 10 Grammatical/Writing Pet Peeves

INCORRECT

CORRECT

EXPLANATION

Write you’re name here.

Write your name here.

“You’re” is a contraction of “you are”. “Your” is possessive.

Apples: 0.49 cents!

Apples: $0.49! (or 49 cents!)

0.49 cents is less than a penny.

I ordered two pizza’s.

I ordered two pizzas.

Make a word plural by adding “-s” or “-es”. Apostrophes indicate possession or contractions. The only exception is “its”, the possessive form of “it”.

Ya’ll come back now, you hear!

Y’all come back now, you hear!

The word “y’all” is a contraction of “you all”. The apostrophe replaces the deleted letters in any contraction. And yes, “y’all” is a real word. =)

The car is being washed.

I am washing the car.

Some situations call for passive voice, but many people grossly overuse it, making their writing boring and vague. Use active voice to make your words more exciting and clarify who’s performing the action.

Being a Stars fan, tickets to the game made Andy very happy.

Being a Stars fan, Andy was happy to receive tickets to the game.

This error is a dangling modifier. The phrase “being a Stars fan” modifies the subject of the sentence. The tickets are not Stars fans; Andy is.

The Stars will win the Cup this year, no one can beat them.

The Stars will win the Cup this year; no one can beat them.
OR
The Stars will win the Cup this year because no one can beat them.

This error is a comma splice, which combines two independent clauses with a mere comma. If you want to get fancy, use a semicolon. Otherwise, just use make one clause dependent or use a comma with a conjunction (and, but, or).

There going to add a room over their at they’re house.

They’re going to add a room over there at their house.

People often misuse these three homophones. Their is possessive. They’re is a contraction of “they are”. There refers to a specific place.

Realator

Realtor

People often add an extra syllable in the middle for some reason, even some realtors themselves.

Nucular

Nuclear

W is most famous for this one, but it’s quite common.

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