Most Common Grammar Mistakes I See on Episode

Let me start by saying this post is not sponsored by Grammarly in any way…I just happen to love their service and wanted to share some of the most common grammar mistakes I see on Episode to help out my fellow writers.

You may not know this, but a lot of Episodes are written by people whose first language isn’t English. If you think about it, that’s pretty cool because you get to read from the viewpoint of someone whose life is probably different from your own in a lot of ways. Sadly, because there are often so many grammar errors these stories (which are honestly really good) don’t get a lot of attention.

If you’re writing for Episode and speak (or rather write) English as a second language I want to help you. It’s not that I’m perfect, but I have a few tips and tricks that can help you out. Here are some of the most common grammar mistakes I see on Episode.

Subject/Verb Agreement

The English language is difficult. I mean we have so many rules about verb tenses and we don’t always follow them. I mean you can add -ed to make your word past tense right? Wrong. There are exceptions. for words like “run” the past tense changes to “ran”, not “runned”. If you’re writing and you’re confused about the correct conjugation of a word you can always use the spelling and grammar check in a document before uploading to Episode. There are also services like Grammerly that can help you out.

Capitalization

I’m not 100% sure that this counts as grammar, but it is something I see a lot. In the English language you have to capitalize the first letter of a sentence, first names, the letter “i” when it stands alone, names of people/places, etc. There are over 15 capitalization rules actually and I can’t cover them all, but I did find a pretty comprehensive list here. While you can choose to capitalize differently for stylistic effect (when someone is yelling), you want to make sure this is an intentional choice, not something that will distract readers.

Plural Nouns

I’ve noticed a few authors make mistakes in this area as well. This is something that can get complicated as well. For example the word “hair” is considered singular even though it refers to thousands of hairs. Weird. Usually you add an “s” to make a noun plural, but sometimes you need an “es”. Also, there are irregular plurals like for the word foot. You don’t say foots you say “feet”. Grammarly has a great article about this in their blog if you have any doubts.

Contractions

When you speak in English you usually use more contractions than if you are writing a college essay. Using contractions makes your writing sound less formal. I see a lot of “Let us go out” or “It is my favorite” in dialogue between two characters who are just “hanging out”. It’s more common to say “Let’s” or “It’s”. Also I notice that at times people forget to put the apostrophe in their writing which gets confusing. Especially with words like “your” and “you’re”, their and “they’re” and “its” and “it’s”. Familiarize yourself with contractions and when you should use them. It’s always okay to use the longer version such as “You are too kind” rather than “You’re too kind” if you want your character to sound more formal. This guide can help you out in knowing what contractions are in the English language and when to use or not use contractions.

Adding “the” in Unusual Places

The word “the” is used differently in other languages. As a result, you may hear non natives speakers using “the” in places you may not expect. It’s actually something that is often used in writing to show someone’s first language isn’t English as is the case with Starfire from Teen Titans. Purdue University is another great resource for helping with grammatical errors and you can find their guide on using articles like “the” here.

There are so many other errors I see on Episode. It’s fine. We aren’t all the same, but if you have a story to tell and you don’t want others to be distracted by your use of language you have to edit. It’s not anyone’s favorite thing in the world. My sister is constantly attacking my writing for overuse or underuse of commas, but I’m grateful to her for helping me out. If you’re really lost and don’t feel like doing the editing on your own you can always message me on Instagram and I’ll be happy to help. I won’t charge, but I may ask you to support me by reading my story in exchange. Happy writing!