The importance of proper grammar
Your probably making grammar mistakes on accident. Did you catch the two gaffes in the previous sentence? Remember to always use the contraction ‘you’re’ when you mean ‘you are.’ ‘Your’ is a possessive pronoun, as in ‘fix your grammar mistake.’ Also, be sure to use by accident instead of on accident – ’by accident’ is grammatically correct.
Grammar errors are easy to miss, and they’re often habitual. However, it’s important to fix them because they drive readers crazy. They make you look bad, especially in a professional setting. If you’re corresponding with a grammar purist – and there are plenty out there – you could even be causing unintended rage. Here are some of the most common grammar mistakes with tips on how to correct them.
Everyday vs every day
Grammar errors may be an everyday part of your writing. The adjective ‘everyday’ means commonplace, daily or ordinary. In noun form, you can use it to designate a routine occasion. However, this compound word does not refer to the unit of time known as a day. When you mean ‘each day,’ remember to separate the words, as in ‘I proofread my writing every day.’
Lay vs lie
The Merriam-Webster Dictionary forgives you for mixing up these common verbs – they’ve been confusing English speakers for centuries, in part, because ‘lay is the past tense of lie, and laid is the past tense of lay.’ One way to keep track of the difference is to consider if you mean ‘to place’ or ‘to be.’
‘Lay’ is transitive (it requires an object) and means to place down in a flat position. ‘Lie’ is intransitive (it makes sense without an object) and means to be in a flat position or to be moving toward one. As Grammarly puts it, ‘You lie down, but you lay something down.’