Today I came across an article online about how to write a better blog post. I wasn’t too impressed with it, though – the language and syntax was a bit off, like using “4th step” instead of the more common “Step 4”, and the line “I advice using simple words on your posts, all articles in my blog are written in simple English.” I mean, seriously, that’s got three things wrong with it in advice about grammar. (“I advice” should be “I advise”, it should be two sentences with a full stop where the comma is, and there are two spaces instead of one between “articles” and “in”.)
And then at the end the conclusion had nothing to do with what the rest of the post had to say; it should really have been a ninth point, rather than a conclusion.
Anyway, it kind of annoyed me. And I know it’s probably some guy in India who got paid US$8 for writing it and thus the author and/or site owner isn’t interested so much in quality as attracting hits for ad revenue, but even so, it annoyed me. That’s also why I’ve linked the Reddit thread where it was posted rather than the article itself.
Continue reading Eight Steps to a Better Blog Post
When writing a novel, language is important. You need to portray the right actions and emotions so that the reader understands what is going on. For that, you need accurate language.
Immersion is also important: it keeps the reader reading. Immersion is about keeping the reader focused on the events of the story, and not distracting them with unbelievable actions, unrealistic use of resources (I recently read a book in which the writer implies that a palace has been built of obsidian – a material wholly unsuitable for construction) or language.
If you don’t want your reader to think about the language you’re using, you need to use it well, in an unobtrusive manner. The best way to do this is to use the most efficient language. Efficiency in language is about conveying an idea accurately to the largest proportion of readers in the fewest words, using the shortest words available.
Continue reading Language Efficiency
When I proofread documents, or even just reading a blog or forum post, there are certain mistakes that I come across time and time again. Some of them crop up across a variety of documents written by individuals of differing levels of familiarity with written English. Below I have collected the most egregious and the most common, and explained what is wrong about them. Continue reading Grammar problems