Thursday, March 4, 2010

Booking Through Thursday- Grammar Police



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?

I have Strunk & Whites The Elements of Style, and yes, I have read it, though I'll say that I don't think that the style the authors promote is the end-all of good writing. I think grammar is very important and it bothers me so much to read writing with poor grammar that I will put a book down if it's sloppy enough. (I've also been known to stop reading poorly-written blogs.) Of course, most professionally published books aren't that sloppy and the most I really ever notice will be some misused pronouns- "She was taller than me" is a typical example. It's I, folks- "She was taller than I". It's a big reason why I dislike reading books written in dialect. Sometimes that technique can really help a reader get inside a character's head, but sometimes if it's not done well it just strips the character of his or her (notice how I didn't say their) dignity and makes the character sound stupid. So yeah, I'm not crazy about bad grammar!

Read more Booking Through Thursday answers here.

12 comments:

logankstewart said...

Wow, this is a topic I find myself thinking about often. On one hand, I think proper grammar is essential. However, there are some rules that can be manipulated and others that can be completely ignored if the writer is able to do it well. Some things, though, like spelling errors and poor punctuation, are (for the most part) inexcusable.

Great post today.

avisannschild said...

I'm bothered by bad grammar (and spelling mistakes, etc.) too, although I quite like "their" singular instead of "his or her" all the time. (The beauty of the English language is that unlike French its rules are not written in stone...)

Lori said...

I really hate this topic this week. LOL. Here's mine.

jlshall said...

I feel the same way about poor grammar, and find it very difficult to enjoy books or blogs that are poorly written. And I have the same problem with books in dialect, too. I mostly just avoid them. So I guess I'm a member of that grammar police force, too.

Jennifer said...

I am finding the responses to be rather enlightening. I find grammar to be rather important. My answer is located here: http://www.rundpinne.com/2010/03/booking-through-thursday-grammar.html

wordlily said...

I've read Strunk & Whites (don't remember if I own it), and I agree, it's certainly not my favorite style guide. At all.

rhapsodyinbooks said...

I hate bad grammar. To me, it sticks out and distracts from the content!

caite said...

I have Strunk & Whites 'The Elements of Style' too...but as anyone who read by blog knows, it has not helped me a great deal.
I should ask for my money back.

....Petty Witter said...

An interesting post, it certainly had me thinking. Like the first two people to comment I'm more worried about poor spelling and punctuation than by poor grammar. In the way of books etc on the matter - apart from several dictionaries and a thesaurus we also have books on semantics and English etymology which are very interesting.

Lenore said...

I am grammar fan too. And, yes, if a book is poorly written, I will put it down. Fortunately, that doesn't happen too often!

booksslicedanddiced said...

Bad grammar drives me crazy, so I really enjoyed this post. I most often use the AP Style Guide, but I found "Eats, Shoots and Leaves" pretty helpful as well.

Zibilee said...

The only one I have is Eats, Shoots and Leaves which I thought was very good.