Why good grammar matters
On December 16, 2013 | 4 Comments | Grammar tips, News & Events, Writing tips |

I attended a women’s conference last year and met a pleasant career coach who helps her clients determine their ideal jobs. She also works with résumés, interview preparations, etc. We exchanged business cards, and she added me to her newsletter mailing list.

She is likely very good at helping people identify career paths that are a good personality fit, which is the crux of her services. However, I have yet to recommend her to a potential client. Why? Because I see at least one glaring grammatical error in each of her newsletters or Facebook posts, and the fact that she makes basic errors in her own materials makes me wonder what damage she might do to with a client’s résumé or cover letter.

Good grammar helps you make a good impression

Here are two examples of errors I’ve seen her make:

1)    Headline of her newsletter:

  • What it said: Its a new year! What are your professional resolutions?
  • What it should have said: It’s a new year! What are your professional resolutions?

2)    Facebook post:

  • What it said: Here are three book’s every female entrepreneur should read
  • What it should have said: Here are three books every female entrepreneur should read

I’m sure this woman is very intelligent, and while I probably know a few people who could benefit from her services, I just can’t bring myself to “share” posts or forward newsletters with errors like these. Think about this example when you set out to market your book. Your bio, your book description, your email pitches, everything you do to promote your work should be free of errors. Grammar does matter, and people do notice – especially if you’re putting yourself out there as a professional writer.


This blog post originally appeared on CreateSpace.com. Reprinted with permission. © 2013 CreateSpace, a DBA of On-Demand Publishing, LLC. All rights reserved.

Comments 4
Beth Posted December 16, 2013 at8:44 pm   Reply

Preach! I just had a conversation with co-workers today on this very topic.

Maria Murnane Posted December 16, 2013 at8:48 pm   Reply


James W. Nelson Posted December 31, 2013 at5:23 pm   Reply

Hi again, Maria,
Just thought I would tell you how a thoughtful Amazon reader treated me in his review.
He pointed out, that about 14% in I had labeled a character wrong, and then said he liked the book but quit reading and deleted; even so he gave me three stars.
So I contacted him and said I would fix the mistake and go thru the whole book “again” (which I did)and send him a free digital copy if he would give me another chance.
He agreed.
I know. Many times I’ve seen “Don’t contact your reviewers.” Well, in this case I did and think it will be OK.
Again, Happy New Year, Maria!
James W. Nelson

Cinda Borling Posted January 4, 2014 at10:31 am   Reply

Maria, you are so right on this. As a reader (not a writer) I find these mistakes, and worse, every time I pick up a book these days. It drives me nuts! Who is doing the proofreading and editing that they don’t see things like spelling errors, using the wrong word in place of one that sounds the same, grammar errors, etc? I think there are job opportunities out there for proofreaders! How do I become one??

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