How Right is Your Copy?
© Dawn Carrington - All Rights Reserved
a copywriter requires a lot of skills, not the least of which is the ability to formulate well-structured sentences
using proper grammar which includes far more than just knowledge of punctuation.
Most independent copywriters don’t have editors on
standby to look over the advertisement or website copy before it is sent to the client. Even if you do intend to
hire an editor, if you’re just starting out in this business, you probably won’t have the funds for a while. So
it’s best to learn or refresh now before you get started because presenting a client with copy riddled with
grammatical errors could cost you future assignments.
Sometimes, writers mistakenly think if something
sounds right, it must be right. They take a risk with their career by guessing instead of knowing for certain. Even
a self-proclaimed grammar nerd will take the time to investigate before assuming. So should you.
There are many pitfalls for copywriters since a
majority of the time it’s possible they will be working with words already unfamiliar to them. For instance, when I
wrote advertising copy for a caterer, I came across words like “intermezzo” and “napery”. These weren’t exactly
words I used in everyday language so I had to get familiar with them in order to be able to use them in proper
context. My job would have been even more difficult had I struggled with the differences between words like “lose”
and “loose” or “their” and “there”.
Learning grammar basics isn’t difficult, and it
should be important to you. You can brush up on what you’ve forgotten or never knew by visiting these
If you’re not willing to take the time to improve
your English skills, it will show in your copy, and the jobs will be few and far between. Being a copywriter takes
a lot of skill, and bad grammar isn’t tolerated very long. So do yourself a favor before you start your career. Go
to one of the above mentioned websites and take a few of the quizzes. Get familiar with what you know and don’t
know. Then you can work to improve in the areas you need.
Companies hire copywriters because they either
don’t have the time or skill to construct an ad or put together a brochure. The last thing your boss expects is to
have to correct your copy. So increase your chances of more assignments by honing your grammar skills to a sharp
point. Your copy will shine better for it.
About the author: Dawn Carrington is the editor-in-chief of Vinspire Publishing (www.vinspirepublishing.com), a
multi-published author, and a freelance writer for various magazines and e-zines, including The Writer, Writer’s
Journal, Writer’s Weekly, and Funds for Writers. Residing in the Lowcountry of South Carolina, she writes
frequently for Writer2Writer.