3 Tools to Help With Grammar and Usage


Writers and people who have to use writing as part of their jobs aren’t perfect. We typo and we make mistakes. Sometimes, though, despite our best proofreading, we turn in content with mistakes.

If you have to do any form of writing for a living – whether social media posts, memos to the staff, emails, or a blog post like this one – you know how embarrassing it is to have someone else point out a mistake. That’s why I use some apps to determine whether or not my writing is ready for clients or public consumption.

What follows is a look at my favorite tools for checking grammar and usage.

1. Grammarly

I use the free version of Grammarly every day. The Chrome extension points out typos and minor grammar issues for online writing. For example, when I write social media updates, blogs posts, or even comment anywhere online, Grammarly flags misspellings and errors in punctuation. I also use Grammarly’s online dashboard  for my more long-form writing.

The free version of Grammarly flags typos, and punctuation issues while the paid version (which I don’t currently use) flags deeper issues such as passive voice and plagiarism.

Cost: Free or upwards of $12/month depending on how many months you subscribe to in advance.

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2. Hemingway

Hemingway gently advises me when I have too many adverbs in my writing or if my sentences are running a bit long. It highlights passive voice usage and informs me when there are better alternatives to some the words I use more often than others. I use Hemingway to check all my big writing projects before turning them in.

Hemingway is one of the few tools I pay to use. As someone who is makes a living as a writer, I find it to be a worthwhile investment.

Cost: $19.99

3. Expresso

I’m new to Expresso, and so far it’s a nifty little tool. I cut and paste my document into the online dashboard, and Expresso analyzes the text and tells me what I’m doing wrong. For example. when I pasted in the text for this post, Expresso found I used weak verbs, filler words, extra long sentences, but no passive voice.

Cost: Free

There are plenty of tools you can use

There are dozens of editing tools currently available, free or for a fee. I haven’t tried them all, but if a tool comes along that I especially like I’ll share it with you here at Telecommunity. In the meantime, check out the above and see if any of the tools help you with your writing. Though I’ve been writing for years, I found that these tools are helping me to think before I type. I never intentionally turn in writing with errors, but I’m more confident now that my writing is clean and tight.

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Do you use any apps for your writing? I hope you’ll share your experiences with us here or on the social networks!

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