Our first NanoNovember Writing Basics series begins with Grammar Matters. Grammar is the foundation of language which supports the delivery of story, content, facts and ideas. The rules of grammar are like rails anchored to the foundation. When these rails are loose, knotted, haphazard, and such, the content stalls, diverts or derails. Ineffective messages result.
Some writers and editors say grammar doesn’t matter in the first draft. They say get the story told and to hell with grammar in the first draft. Others say that the more familiar a writer is with grammar, the more natural they are in its use. A writer with a strong sense of grammar produces cleaner first drafts, thus, subsequent drafts are easier to revise.
How much of grammar is intuitive to native speakers? What are the most common grammar mistakes to easily catch and correct in a first draft? When is the best time to consider grammar in the writing process? Should writers edit grammar as they write? When it comes to writing well, do writing programs such as Nanowrimo help or hinder writers? We’ll discuss these questions, as well as provide additional tips for good first draft grammar in this week’s WritingWednesday.
Resources for Grammar Matters
Grammar for Dummies: Grammar and Usage
English Grammar for Dummies
Grammar Girl: Quick and Dirty Tips
Mignon Fogarty, Quick and Dirty Tips