Friday, May 25, 2012

Writing Wrongs

First, some blog business. To make this blog a bit more interactive I added the ability for you to subscribe to future posts and / or comments and to follow by email. Just enter your information in the areas to the right.

Also, I'm announcing a book giveaway. That's right, a free, autographed book from me to a lucky winner. There's one condition, though. You may notice that as of now there are only fourteen people who have proudly admitted they are following this blog. I know from the reports I get that there are millions, well, hundreds of people who read each post. There's nothing to be ashamed of! Become a follower. When I reach 50 followers I will have a drawing and someone will win his or her choice of a signed copy of either the award-winning Protecting the Cittern or The Ibex Trophy. If that person already has both books, and come to think of it, you all should have both books by now, then I will give my work in progress, Raw Umber, as soon as it is published. Unless hell freezes over by then.

Don't worry about security or privacy if you provide your email address or follow the blog. The information isn't used for anything but inflating my ego.

Now, back to the actual blog.

I went on a bit of a rant last time regarding improper use of certain phrases. Well, hide your children, because I'm not done yet. Here are a few, and believe me there are many more, spelling and / or usage errors that occur way too frequently by people who allegedly speak English as a main language, who don't think about what they're actually writing, and possibly don't own dictionaries or have Internet access.

First, I definitely know that definitely is not spelled definately. Who put that "a" in the middle? Don't people have spell check?

There is no such word as irregardless. Please, don't say it or write it. It's regardless. The "ir" implies the negative. For example something irrelevant is not relevant. Something irregular is not regular. Something irrational is not rational. Something ironic is not ... onic? Never mind, you get the point. And the "less" implies that something is missing. Hence, without regard to something. You don't need both.

During a thunderstorm, and we get some doozies here in Florida, I have no fear of ever being struck by lightening. Lightning, on the other hand, can do a lot of damage. Don't put that "e" in the middle. Unless you're talking about losing weight, thus lightening the load you carry around all day, or telling a joke during a tense situation, thus lightening the mood, leave out the "e". Maybe lightning never strikes twice in the same place, but lightening shows up way too often.

Sometimes what you hear sounds like what you write, but if you speak the language there's no excuse for these next two mistakes. Many people write things like "I was suppose to go to school today", or "I use to know that", omitting the "d" indicating past tense in supposed and used. Spoken, the "d" slurs with the "t" in "to" so it isn't heard, but the phrases appear correctly in enough places that you'd think people would figure it out.

In the same way, the contraction in phrases like "I should have done that" is "I should've done that", which sounds like "I should of done that". So they write what they hear, not what makes sense in the English language.

Don't even get me started on there, their, and they're!

Obviously I'm turning into a cranky curmudgeon. Time to go. I'm working outside and just saw a flash of lightening. Irregardless of the odds of me being hit, I definately should get inside. I should of gone they're earlier when I heard the thunder, but I was suppose to finish writing this blog.