Don't you just want to slap him in his smug face?

The following is inspired by @BobbleBardsley challenging me to write 200 words or fewer on grammar-dinosaurs.

There’s no excuse for pedantry.

At least there’s no excuse for pedantry at the expense of clarity.

A staid and stolid adherence to archaic rules laid down by English teachers isn’t something to be proud of. It’s something that can leave your writing dull, uninspiring and uninteresting.

But that isn’t what you want.

So throw out the grammar guides, and embrace English as a living language. And piss off the pedants into the bargain.

Great Techniques That Piss Off Pedants

Starting a Sentence with And or But – “One shouldn’t start a sentence with a conjunction”. Unless you want to grab a reader’s attention. Which you do. Right?

Less, Not Fewer – Do your audience see a problem with using less? If they shop at supermarkets they won’t. So don’t sweat it.

Contractions – Over-zealous editors don’t like it when you don’t use do not. Casual readers just like the conversational tone a contraction conveys.

Acronyms – No matter how familiar your audience is with the material or subject, some people want you to write everything out in full. They should STFU.

So, what grammatical rules do you gleefully abandon? Or do you think there’s really a place for pedantry?

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