I am not perfect, but I try to be in my writing.
When I was attending Kansas State, I had a professor for my editing and design class that pounded into our heads appropriate grammar and usage. On one of the first days of the class we took a quiz to see how much we knew (or in my case) didn’t know. I was horrified to only have gotten a few correct on the quiz. Thanks Dodge City Public Schools. I think I learned more in that editing and design class than I had learned in all of my elementary, middle and high school English classes.
From then on, I was completely corrupted. I can’t read a magazine without copy editing it or looking for a mistake. Even now, 12 years since that class, I have a hard time getting through an email from someone who has poor grammar or even a text message. Yes, I’m one of those people who spells out words in texts. I have a hard time not doing it and succumbing to the abbreviations of texting.
My first real job out of college was at a daily newspaper in Northwest Oklahoma, and there I again was shown what I didn’t know. My editor harped on “over and under/more than and less than” and one of my least favorite terms, first annual. I despise that term. There’s no such thing as first annual! You have to have an event more than once for it to be an annual event. My husband rolls his eyes every time I rant and rave about that term. I even drug out my old AP stylebook to prove to him that I was right one day last year.
Grammar is often humbling. I can get a kick out of someone’s lack of proper grammar, and eventually I will make a mistake and use incorrect grammar. So watch out! I’m on to you..