Okay, so, I *think* I am finally settled and I can begin focusing on my blog again. Being out of the country for a week and a half really does a number on your sense of surroundings and ability to really...do anything. LOL.
Today I wanted to talk about something that really...irks me: the fact that I am an English Major and a terrible speller.
Now, I'm not mad that I am a terrible speller per say. I'm more angry that it's assumed that because I am an English Major (and a writer), I am a great speller. Or great with grammar, or that I have automatically read and understood all classics.
I am not a good speller. It took me forever to remember how to spell necessary (nec-essary, like neck-essary is how I finally learned, by the way). Also, I'm really bad with grammar. Commas suck, and fragments and run-on sentences? We have a tough relationship. As for all those classics I'm supposed to have read--do people realize that there's more to English than just the classics? There's literature from all over the world (which is what I took, WORLD LIT).
Also, I am an ENGLISH WRITING major which means my track was more focused on academic writing rather than LIT (which involves culture studies at my college...which is odd and...well, that's a whole other conversation).
Anyways, the point I am trying to make is this: Just because I can't spell certain words, have some problems with run-on sentences, and haven't read every classic, doesn't mean I didn't earn my degree, or that I am stupid. It means that I don't know everything (and I don't claim to! That would be silly!). As an English Major, there's this pre-concived notion that we all think we're grammar police and we're all in love with The Great Gatsby.
Just FYI - I don't think I am the grammar police, although I do have my pet peeves (like everyone), and I happen to love The Great Gatsby.
There's also this silly notion that, in order to be a great writer, you have to be a good speller and excellent with grammar. Maybe you do have to have that to be a good writer, but you don't have to have those things to be a good storyteller.
If there is one thing I have learned, in the end, people just want a good story.
Take the book An Uphill Climb by David Sargent. Read it? It's a great book. Guess what? In the book, David talks about writing the book (confusing, huh?). His wife mentions that the spelling and grammar are terrible, but she KNEW it had potential and she knew it was a great story. That always resonated with me.
Don't get me wrong--we should all strive for as polished of a manuscript as possible....but it's not the end of the world if we have trouble with a few sentences or words.
Now, if only we could convince the rest of the world.
You're all writers and subject to the same scrutiny, how do you feel when others do this? What do you take comfort in?