Even if you’re not a writer by profession, most jobs and many other daily activities require at least some writing. A brief perusal of online articles suggests that large numbers of people don’t edit their writing as well as they should.
There is a plugin for WordPress called After the Deadline that can help with spelling, grammer, and context. It is available as part of the free Jetpack set of plugins from WordPress.
Violence aside, error-free writing is more than a nitpicky thing. Small mistakes can lead to grave consequences. You should ensure your writing is error-free for the following seven reasons.
1. Avoid a Deeply Embarrassing Misunderstanding.
For example, say you want to earn some extra money cleaning houses. You post an ad that reads like this:
“Tired of cleaning yourself? Let me do it.”
If anyone offers you a cleaning gig based on this ad, you may find they have very different expectations of just what you are expected to clean.
2. One Left-out Letter Can Lead to Dire Economic Consequences.
“For rent: 6-room hated apartment.”
Expect relatively few calls for this one. Anyone who does inquire about renting the apartment may have issues with depression.
3. You May Unnecessarily Alarm People.
You’re looking for a new home for your beloved dog, Fido, maybe because a family member has allergies. So you place an ad which reads,
“Dog for sale: eats anything and is fond of children.”
Let’s hope the neighbors don’t see this ad. If they do, you can bet they won’t be bringing their children over for a visit. Expect a decline in your own kids’ popularity.
4. You May Sexually Harass Someone by Accident.
Suppose you send an email which includes the following sentence:
“I know how busty you are.”
This could prove especially awkward if the person you’re emailing is a man. Presumably this person meant to write, “I know how busy you are.” It’s easy to make mistakes in an email since you’re often in a hurry when you write them. You don’t need to spend a long time proofreading your emails, but you may want to at least read them over before sending them.
5. You May Cause Parents to Scramble for Private School Tuition Money for their Kids.
A digital billboard in South Bend, IN, had the following interesting message:
“15 best things about our pubic schools.”
It’s just wrong that a word like “pubic” should have a spelling so similar to the very commonly-used “public”, but you have to deal with it. A private company made this error, not the district itself, and if you work at a company responsible for billboard content, you probably want to avoid embarrassing your clients. Besides, public schools get enough of a bad rap these days without a billboard calling them “pubic schools.”
6. You May Cause Tension in Your Marriage.
Say you’re a husband texting his wife and you send the following message:
“I love you, my previous wife.”
Not quite the same thing as saying you love your precious wife. But hopefully your wife has a sense of humor. That’s one of the reasons you love her, right?
7. You May Accidentally Start a Religious Pilgrimage.
Okay, this one’s a bit of a stretch, but as many as one in ten Americans do worry that the world will end on December 21st, 2012. These same people may be anticipating a Second Coming, so avoid sending a memo like this one.
“Meet with Christ in Tulsa.”
Sure, the memo’s recipient will probably realize you meant to say, “Meet with Chris in Tulsa,” if for no other reason than that it’s unlikely Christ would choose Tulsa as the venue for his Second Coming. But if you made a mistake like this, you might just as easily send the memo to the entire office by accident.
Your officemates might each forward it to a few other people, and the next thing you know it’s gone viral. And hundreds of doomsday believers show up in Tulsa, only to have their hopes of observing the Second Coming cruelly dashed. I’m just saying it’s not impossible.