Some writers are crazy about grammar; I’m not one of them. I do my best, but I know I’m not perfect.

Editors and proofreaders help to find writers’ mistakes, but having said that, you still need to have a basic understanding of grammar if you intend to be a writer.

Sending out emails to publishers riddled with grammatical mistakes is unprofessional and makes you look foolish.

So let’s see – how’s your grammar?

Let’s try a little test with mistakes I commonly see.

Try to do it without looking at the answers below. When you’re finished add up your points and see where you stand.

1. Bob was _____tired when he arrived from the UK.
a) quite    b) quiet

2. The table fell and ____leg broke.
a) its    b) it’s

3. Mpho performed better _____Kago on the maths exam.
a) then     b) than

4. Refilwe waited with _____ breath to hear the results of the competition.
a) bated        b) baited

5. The book needed a glossary; it was a last minute ___.
a) edition    b) addition

6. “Your character in chapter two is a bit flat, you need to ____him out a bit,” the editor said.
a) flash         b) flesh

7. The _____ leash was made of expensive leather.
a) dog’s        b) dogs

8. If it had any _____ it was to stop everyone from working.
a) effect        b) affect

9. It was _____car that was hit by the meteor.
a) there        b) their

10. If _____going to the movie you better leave now.
a) your        b) you’re

11. He only worked three days because it was just a ____job.
a) piece        b) peace

12. She carried that black bag everywhere and it ____everyone’s interest.
a) peaked        b) piqued

13. _____ supposed to work the night shift tonight?
a) who’s        b) whose

14. He got to the job ____,but found everyone had left.
a) site        b) sight

15. The herd got struck by lightning and all of the _____ calves were killed.
a) cows’         b) cow’s

Point Allocation
5 point        0 points
1.         A            B
2.         A            B
3.         B            A
4.         A            B
5.         B            A
6.         B            A
7.         A            B
8.         A            B
9.         B            A
10.       B            A
11.        A            B
12.       B            A
13.       A            B
14.       A            B
15.       A            B

75-70: Grammar whiz kid!!Could I have you edit something…;)

65-50: You’ll get by.

45-35: Go back to your old English textbook and do some studying!

Below 35: You’re embarrassing yourself

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