Gripes about the butchering of grammar reached some folks who have encouraged me to write a blog entry on specific topics. So, I’ll write about one grammatical thing area week. In addition, I’ll cite the rule from the Harbrace Handbook and then give examples of incorrect and correct usage. Who knows? Perhaps I can start a movement where writers actually make concerted efforts to use English grammar correctly.
My former life as a high school English teacher somewhat qualifies me to undertake this project. When I discuss a grammatical rule, I do it knowing that creative writing sometimes demands the breaking with conventions. Still, our language needs to hold on to “the rules.” If people begin using their own set of rules, no one will understand what another is writing before long. Effective written communication is dependent upon standards by which all content can be judged. In regard to oral English, gross violations of grammatical rules destroy the message of the speaker.
So, look for my rant on grammar each week. I’ll bet that many of you might be surprised that you’re using an incorrect form of some things. Please don’t think that I’m preaching. My intentions are simply to bring about a bit of correct grammatical construction to the world of writing and, to a lesser degree, speaking.