What Would You Do?

148dd0dI was reading a segment of someone’s work-in-progress during my blog time this past week. You know what I’m talking about if you’ve navigated the blog scene very long. Some bloggers use their blog to post segments of their work.

The segment was very interesting and pulled me in to what was happening, but it was also distracting, because of the grammatical errors. I was hesitant at first to mention this, as I didn’t want to give the wrong impression or discourage the author.

I liked what she had written, but wondered if she realized how many errors were in the piece. At this point in my career, I’ve developed what I call a trained eye (for everybody’s work but my own 🙂 ).  Errors just jump off the page. I deal with the same thing when reading novels. And while they are few and far in between, yes, many novels have at least one or two errors.

Back to my dilemma. What was I suppose to do? What would you do? I did decide to point out the fact that there were quite a few grammatical errors, but also commented on the interesting storyline and her ability to pull me in. I didn’t want to come across as a know-it-all, you’re not very good at this writing thing, because I’m not, and like I said, I enjoyed her work. I just wanted to make sure she was aware of the errors.

Why? I think it’s partly because my first round of rejections from agents, included a blurb that pointed out numerous grammatical and structural errors. I didn’t realize how bad the submission was, or how perfect they expected it to be. I don’t want this aspiring author to go through the same thing.

She hasn’t responded to my comment, and I’m not sure if she will. I can only hope she took it as I meant it to be taken.

So what do you think? What would you do? Would you want someone to point out your errors or just not say anything?

-Jan R

What Would You Do?

9 thoughts on “What Would You Do?

  1. I proofread a story for a friend and she had repeated grammatical errors. I mentioned the problem, but didn’t PUSH it, because I didn’t want to discourage her, and I figured she’d fix them or get someone else to proof them better.
    She didn’t.
    Her story is fun, and she’s asked me to recommend it, but I have a hard time encouraging people to buy the book with all of those errors… I can’t help feeling bad for her, because I’m sure it has hurt her sales.
    That being said, I agree with the above- a lot depends of whether they’ve asked for feedback and how long I’ve known someone.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yeah that seems to be the concensus in this group and I think I would be wise to listen. I just hate it for them, because I know the embarrassment I went through after sending mine out to agents. One of them was nice enough to point it out. the problem. I never knew how bad it was until I took some classes and read some books. The errors just jumped off the page-honestly I’m glad the agent got back with me, but I would have much rather someone else pointed it out, instead of saying that was great.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I suppose it depends on whether they asked for feedback or not. I had someone ask me to read through a piece of work and give feedback, and when I noticed grammatical errors I asked for clarification on whether they wanted to know about those or just a general opinion.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I think it becomes very difficult for people to catch up with education at a certain point. We don’t hesitate to correct a child, but we shy from mentioning it to an adult. I wouldn’t point out mistakes in a first contact situation, and I wouldn’t point them out publicly, but I would send a private note to someone I’d known for a while.

    Liked by 2 people

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