Remember when someone not very nicely told me I sucked at writing?
Instead of using that experience as an excuse to quit, feel bad about myself or any other negative outcome that could have occurred, I decided to do something positive instead. First, I wrote about it so that I could share the experience with y’all and let you know that I’m far from perfect.
Then I decided to challenge myself to become a better writer. One of the ways that I did this was to try Grammarly. There’s no shame in my game, and I’m never too proud to work on my skills and try to become a better writer.
Today I’m going to share with you what I liked (and what I didn’t), as well as give you the opportunity to win a six month membership to Grammarly to help you improve your own sweet grammar skills.
Are you feeling lucky?
What Is Grammarly?
From their website:
Grammarly makes you a better writer by finding and correcting up to 10× more mistakes than your word processor.”
Grammarly is basically an online writing tool that integrates with your current programs to check your writing for common grammar mistakes and help you to correct them. I’ve found it to be hugely beneficial.
How I’ve Used It
You can log into your account (try it for free for 30 days!) or use the “easy button” method of adding the Google Chrome extension like I did. By adding the extension, it automatically works with my current platforms to check my work.
I can be in my Gmail email inbox and see it functioning. Or keep track of how many critical errors are in a blog post (like I’m writing right now in the back-end of WordPress) and see Grammarly working its magic in the bottom right-hand corner.
As I’m typing this post, right now I have two “critical errors” BTW. I just fixed them both; one was to place a hyphen between right and hand, to make it right-hand and the other was a misspelling (which I would have caught w/spellcheck).
When I first started, I copied and pasted text from a post directly into my Grammarly account after I wrote it. That way I could edit AFTER I was done writing it. Lately, I’ve been correcting errors as I’m writing, which I prefer (I’m way too type-A for my own good!).
What I Like about Grammarly
1. It’s easy to use.
After I figured out how to add the Google Chrome extension (which isn’t hard BTW), then Grammarly just became a normal part of my workflow.
2. There’s a second set of eyes on my work.
It’s helped me to see some of the common grammar errors that I make (like too many commas) and I’d like to think that I’m becoming a better writer due to using it.
What I Disliked
1. It seems to slow down processing speed.
I’m sure it’s because it’s working in the background constantly, but it’s a drawback nonetheless.
2. It appears to duplicate my copy.
I can’t say this with 100% certainty, but the timing of when it started happening (only in WordPress BTW) is curious to say the least. Now I know to watch out for it, so it’s not a huge deal, but I’ve published posts that I’ve had to go back and correct due to this. It could look really unprofessional if I didn’t catch it!
Want to Win Your Own Six Month Membership?
Grammarly graciously offered to give one reader their own free six month membership of this great tool. FYI, this post wasn’t underwritten (meaning I didn’t get paid to write it).
I chose to try Grammarly on my own after I read about it somewhere. Then the company reached out to me to write a review and I did get an extended trial. The company is also comping the giveaway prize, which is how you benefit.
Simply leave a comment asking me a question about writing, my freelance business or anything else you’re curious to know (this way I can collect some blog fodder;-). I’ll input the comments into a random number generator a week from today (midnight CST on 4/30/15) and email the winner on May 1st, 2015.