March 4 is National Grammar Day: Have you made plans yet? Perhaps a visit to the library with your soul mate or maybe you're still figuring out which thrilling grammar gala to attend.
Just in case you haven't planned ahead, here are four reasons to celebrate, five ways to imbibe and six fun--yes, fun--grammar resources.
First, a few fun factoids to fuel your fire:
Better Grammar Correlates with Higher Achievement: From both Forbes and Harvard Business Review: A study by Grammarly.com of Linkedin users showed that professionals with fewer grammar errors in their profiles achieved higher positions. Those who failed to progress to a director-level position within the first 10 years of their careers made 2.5 times as many grammar mistakes as their director-level colleagues.
Bad Grammar is a Turn off for Many Daters--and Good Grammar Can Be a Turn On! According to PR Daily, an online survey by Kibin of 1,700 adults reported that 43 percent of online daters consider bad grammar a "major" turnoff. More than a third (35 percent) think good grammar is sexy, and 22 percent couldn't care less.
Poor Grammar Hurts Your Credibility: Grammar mistakes call into question the veracity of any information you provide. People who notice errors are likely to wonder whether other information you supply is incorrect. If you don't check your grammar, perhaps you don't check your facts.
Poor Grammar Costs Money: The BBC reported that spelling mistakes cost millions of dollars in online sales. One would assume that grammar mistakes inhibit sales, as well, since both reflect upon a company's image, credibility and quality.
Perhaps you're convinced of the importance of good grammar, but wonder how to partake in the festivities. Here, then, are five ways to commemorate the comma, honor the apostrophe and punctuate the party:
Share your pet punctuation peeve as a comment on this post (below). My biggest irk is when someone uses "and I" incorrectly, as in, "He gave failing grades to Charlie and I." For one, it's easy to test which word to use. Just get rid of "Charlie and..." and see if "I" works in the sentence. He gave failing grades to I? Of course not. He gave failing grades to me; ergo, "He gave failing grades to Charlie and me" is correct. Why does this particular error drive me crazy? I think it's because the person using it has to make a conscious decision not to say, "Charlie and me," which would be much more natural.
- Post your favorite grammar gaffe on Facebook. If you're hard pressed for a good boo-boo, check out grammarly's daily post.
Watch Grammar Rock on YouTube with your kid, grandkid, neighbor's kid or date. My favorite? Conjunction Junction for its catchy tune and clever rhymes.
Thank your favorite English teacher--or parent--for every grammar rule they ever taught you. Thanks, Dad.
Read a good grammar book. You may be pleasantly surprised by how entertaining they are. A look at some popular titles prove the point:
Sin and Syntax by Constance Hale, Grammar Snobs are Great Big Meanies by June Casagrande, The Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing by Mignon Fogarty and the now classic Eats, Shoots & Leaves by Lynne Truss, both the adult and children's versions.
In addition to the four books above, this writer highly recommends:
• Grammarly, a free resource to find and correct your writing mistakes
• EditMob, a crowd-sourced typo finding service for bloggers, which is also currently free in beta version
So, how are your spending National Grammar Day? Why is grammar important--or not important--to you? Feel free to share your pet punctuation peeve or favorite grammar resource.