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The 5 Most Common English Language Writing Rules - Articles Surfing
When writing in the English language, there are rules that must be followed in order for the reader to understand the text. Without writing rules, words would be sprawled all over the page without making much sense, but with these rules in place, what is on the page can be processed and a mental image be developed. Otherwise, English-speaking people would be intellectually deficient due to the lack of quality reading materials.
Spelling is one of the most important things when writing because misspelled words can ruin the credibility of the person who wrote them. Following such rules as 'I before E except after C or when it sounds like A as in neighbor or neigh' can help in the spelling of words, especially if the writer is not sure which comes first ' the I or the E.
Punctuation is very important in making a sentence read correctly. The most common punctuation mistake is the placement of the comma. Sometimes people are called 'comma happy' because they have commas every five words. This isn't necessary because commas are supposed to be used to separate the parts of sentences that stand by themselves, such as parenthetical sentences. An example of a parenthetical sentence: 'There was so much candy, not that I minded, but I knew I couldn't eat it all alone.' Also, avoid using commas after conjunctions such as 'and' and 'but.'
The run-on sentence
It is only appropriate that run-on sentences be listed next under punctuation because it is due to lack of punctuation that a run-on sentence is born. An example of a run-on sentence is: 'We went down to the store to get some candy but they didn't have the kind we wanted so we went to the next store and they didn't have what we wanted either so we decided to go home when we saw a store we had never seen before and it had exactly what we wanted.' Try saying that one without taking a breath. Okay, you might be able to do it and it might make sense, but it will read a lot better with some punctuation. Two or three sentences could be formed out of that run-on sentence with a couple periods, a comma, and added words to make it read less choppy.
There are some who think that the words at the beginning of sentences are the only ones worthy of capitalization. People and places, referred to as proper names, should be capitalized and so should acronyms and titles.
When referring to the time, tense is very important. The time period in the whole piece of writing should be consistent. When talking about yesterday, the entire piece should stay in yesterday unless the reader is being brought into today. A sentence that reads, 'He missed the bus yesterday and he is mad' is not correct. The correct tense is, 'He missed the bus yesterday and he was mad.' True, he might still be mad today, but chances are the sentence is not speaking of today.
These 5 rules are amongst the many grammar rules that exist, but they do tend to be the worst offenses that can compromise the quality of the content. The reader can become frustrated and the writer makes it obvious that they were napping during English grammar class when these basic rules were discussed. By building a strong foundation with the basics, other rules will fall into place with practice. Before long, the writing is of a better quality and the reader understands everything.
Copyright © 1995 - Photius Coutsoukis (All Rights Reserved).
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