The Six Traits: Conventions

Friday, August 7

Conventions are one of those necessary things that no one much likes.
Spell-check's one my best friends. But best friends can make mistakes. Which means you have to read over your manuscript.

Yeah, the WHOLE THING.
(While your at it, you might as well read it aloud. I've heard that's helpful in the revision process.)

 What to check for:
Grammar: sending a publisher a manuscript with the words "I is a good writer" might not give a terribly good impression.
Spelling: Spell-check can mistake a misspelled word. It's not 100% accurate.
Punctuation: Periods, colons, semi-colons, accents, quotations. All those dotty little things.(Look out for that tricky "it's" and "its")
Paragraphing: Dialogue, change of scenery, different subjects.

Capitalization: Names, beginning of sentences, the works.

If it's any comfort, every writer has to go through that.

What the rubric says:
The writer demonstrates a good grasp of standard writing conventions (e.g., spelling, punctuation, capitalization, grammar, usage, paragraphing) and uses conventions effectively to enhance readability. Errors tend to be so few that just minor touch-ups would get this piece ready to publish.

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