Writing Pet Peeves?

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We all have writing pet peeves. For some, it is a word they dislike. Others, it’s an expression or poor grammar. When I say ‘word’, I don’t mean weasel words, but rather those we hear all the time in speech, the ones that make us cringe. Sadly, some of those end up finding in our writing. Words like REALLY, and LIKE.

There’s also the misspelling of certain words. Such as:
Your vs. you’re,
There vs. their vs. they’re.
Better yet, how about
Site, cite, and sight?
Lead vs. led
Affect vs, effect,
Assure, vs. insure vs. ensure.
Its vs. it’s.
To vs. too
You’re vs. your

Having learned English as a second language, there are times I can’t wrap my head around some of those, and yes I have to stop and think…is it this one, or that one? 

I could keep going, but it’ll double my word count and I want to stay close to 500. 

Some people tend to use the ‘lazy’ route when texting or sending a quick message on social media. That’s their prerogative, but it creates a lazy habit that sometimes can end up in their writing.

 There’s also the misuse of apostrophe’s in plural word’s. Yes I did that on purpose. Both times. Plural don’t need an apostrophe. The possessive does.

One that drives many people up the wall is the use of at to end a sentence. “Where are you at?” Grammatically, that’s incorrect. Where are you? Ah, that sounds better. 

The above are all pet peeves many writers hate to see, specially in novels. Some set my teeth on edge when I find them in writing. My biggest peeves–yes, plural, I have two–are not words or expressions. They’re not a mere typo or grammatical error.

The first one is: 

Some people say writing is NOT work. As someone who is semi-retired (I work three hours a day cooking for my neighbours and taking care of their daughter when she gets out of school), I spend a good part of  the rest of my day writing. I have poured many hours into my novels, attending classes, conferences, and workshops to learn the tricks of the trade, and applying them to my writing. I’m constantly striving to learn more and improve. Whether you’re traditionally or self-published, writing is work. Correction, writing is hard work. I’ve always said:

Writing is hard.
Editing is harder.
Marketing is the hardest. 

A friend of mine works as a freelance writer. She’s up at 4:00 a.m. on a daily basis, bent over her keyboard, writing her columns. People have said to her, “What do you do with your time since you’re not working?” When she tells them she is working as a freelance writer, they reply “Really? Oh so, what do you do with all your time?” Grrrr…

What’s my worst and biggest pet peeve related to writing? I know all of you writers out there will agree with me on this one. Drum roll please… 

People who believe ALL writers are rich. I chuckle as I write. 

What’s your writing pet peeve? 

 

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2 thoughts on “Writing Pet Peeves?

  1. Very good post! I also have my pet peeves, and yet, I also have those words I commonly screw up. A man I know, with a PhD in English, thankfully tells me writing is about communicating an idea and it’s less important to ensure you don’t use slang, and more important that you reach your audience.
    I, too, chuckled at the notion that writers are rich. And I do agree that writing is hard, editing harder and marketing is the hardest. So very true!

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