How important is grammar to a writer?

There’s a bias associated with the people who know you; unless you ask them seriously they are always bound to say, ‘It’s good’

The following was written in response to an edx assignment for a course I am part of. Shared as is.

I write fiction, most of the times. I can’t be sure if I’m good, though I figure I must be reasonably good, for the most credible comment I ever received was from a senior in college, a senior I had no idea even existed! There’s a bias associated with the people who know you; unless you ask them seriously they are always bound to say, ‘It’s good’. That however does not happen with strangers, I mean what’s the motive?

The prompt for the week was about discussing your writing process or discuss something you found interesting in Professor Fred D’Agostino’s video. This will be a bit of both.

One of the things I struggle with, more so since I started writing longer stuff is converting what’s in my mind to what’s on the paper. The conversion rate/efficiency is not that great. I am not sure if it’s because of lack of impeccable grammar, or vocabulary. I think both of them do complement each other.

I never had what you’d call impeccable grammar. I am not a scholar. The last I had of grammar was five or so years before; back when I was in school. And even then, I had graduated to writing paragraphs, and stuff. That was all the creativity I was allowed. But then an impeccable grammar should not really be a requirement I think.

Scholarly people have their place in the world, and they should be there too, it’s just that Grammar shouldn’t be binding. Grammar should be like Legos, providing you with just the basic tools, allowing you the freedom to construct your world, tell your story the way you want. Grammar should not be binding, should not be a burden. It should not make you not want to write because you’re scared of the grammatical outcome.

I might be the only one thinking this, but I don’t like when somebody tells me this word does not exist. I mean how do you think new words are added each year in the dictionary?

Grammar is important, necessary even, but only as long as it does not obstruct writing.

P.S. I think I used too many commas, can’t help it!


Today, I had a chance to look back at your comment; and I was surprised to not have replied to it earlier.
Surprised because today makes a total of two comments on the blog.
That was a poor attempt at a joke. Sorry about that! And thank you, for the time you chose to spend here…

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