I write by ear, therefore make many mistakes, grammatically and then some. It doesn’t mean I’m a bad writer. This took me a long time to learn.
People love to make you feel inept and stupid because according to the Gods of Grammar, you’re an outcast if you don’t tidy things up. The trouble with that is, sometimes sprucing steals the charm right off the page.
A former friend who did some editing for me, thinking I’m the worse writer in the world, really led me to believe without an English degree, I was just making a big fool of myself.
E.B. White said...writing is an act of faith, not a trick of grammar.
I’m stitching that on a pillow.
Perfection without personality is boring. To have heart when you write is what it’s all about, in your own words, imperfectly or otherwise.
One of my favorite tales is about John Steinbeck, no slouch in the prose department (Mice and Men, The Grapes of Wrath.)
He had sent some pages over to his publisher who after reading them, came out of his office and said to his secretary, “This is the damnedest thing. This sounds nothing like John.” Miss whomever said, “I cleaned it up. Fixed all his grammar, you know, edited out all the mistakes.” And the publisher said, “Well, you just took the Steinbeck, right out of Steinbeck.”
I love that story.
She rests her case.