Kill that crappy manuscript with this one strategy

So, you’ve written a novel or a term paper or some other massive document that now needs to be reviewed, revised, maybe you’re even thinking of tossing it because you know it’s filled with writing disasters lke grammar, punctuation, spelling, writing style, tenses, adverbs, over-used words.  Writers know the horrors of all of these and more, and we all rely on our own eyes, and maybe a few more, to try to find all of the clogs in the pipe.  But what if I told you there was an easier way to get a handle on that manuscript, that there was a way you could tame it and whip it into shape so that your eyes and a few others are the final touches just to ‘make sure’?



According to their website at

“Grammarly makes you a better writer by finding and correcting up to 10x more mistakes than your word processor.”

I was interested in finding out if that was true, so I teamed up with Grammarly for a trial run of their “pro” software.  Here’s what I found.

  • It finds and corrects grammatical mistakes, and also catches contextual spelling errors, such as it’s vs its or their/there/they’re.
  • Grammarly identifies poor vocabulary usage. It singles out phrases like “This ice cream is good”, and helps to strengthen it. Grammarly not only identifies common problems like this, but gives you suggestions on how to improve your writing to optimize your content.
  • It scans what you’ve written for proper use of grammar rules, like subject-verb agreement (Bertie and me/I went to the store), and modifier placements (Where is it at?) It is an ugly, but necessary tool, because, let’s face it, most of us aren’t experts in the field, and can use all the help we can get.
  • Grammarly catches adverbs. And adjectives. It tells you how many you have. It shows them all to you in multi-color.  Yes, it identifies the horrors in your manuscript so you can rip that sucker apart and make it the best it can be.
  • It is portable and not only works on documents but on the web, too. If you tweet, Facebook, Instagram, if you have a blog or do any web writing, it’s an awesome tool to have at your fingertips.

I enjoyed using Grammarly and I’m glad the company gave me a free premium membership so I could test run the application to see how it worked for me. As I am the queen of repetitive words and adverbs, I found this program to be quite advantageous. I also found that the pro version offers a few extra goodies like checking for subject-verb agreement and word choice. They also offer a plagerism scan so you can check for any phrases or paragraphs that may sound too much or look too much like something else already in print.

I did find that Grammarly didn’t catch every mistake, but no program will.  That’s when you have to rely on your own eyes and the sets of several others, but at least you can really tighten up that prose before passing it along.  I also had a glitch in the beginning, but after working through it, the issue was sorted out, and I discovered it had nothing to do with the program, but my computer.  I can also say that the Grammarly folks are on top of things and their customer service is very good. The only other thing that others might call a drawback is that there is no live chat.

As an author, I found the program to be very helpful and I wanted to share the info with you, so I teamed up with Grammarly to give away a six-month premium subscription to one lucky author/writer.  All you have to do is sign up at the Rafflecopter link below to enter.  The prize will be given away directly by Grammarly, so the winner’s email and name will be provided to Grammarly so they can issue the award.

Of course, you’re going to want to test-drive the program before you enter to see what it can do, so head on over to  This link is optimized for the writing and author community to help Grammarly see how folks are responding to their product.

If you like what you see, go ahead and sign up to win a six-month premium subscription. What have you got to lose? It’s a great little program.



Good luck!!


12 thoughts on “Kill that crappy manuscript with this one strategy

    1. Deby, you can add words to the dictionary. As for the Grammarly, it is a grammar program designed to catch standard (and not so standard) mistakes. Anything outside the ‘norm’ it will flag. it wouldn’t be a very good grammar program if it didn’t catch ‘abnormal’ writing. That’s up for us to break the rules, not the program. 🙂 You can ask it to ignore the suggestion. After all, our eyes are the final say so, but I found it very helpful in picking out weak sentences, inconsistent word choices, and punctuation. The program can only handle up to 30,000 words at a time, so don’t try to plug in an 80,000-word novel. I know that Grammarly is working on upgrading the number of words it can handle, but they haven’t done so yet. I’d give it a whirl and see if you like it, and it certainly wouldn’t hurt to enter to win a free 6-month subscription to their pro program.


  1. Thank you for all the great information! I tried Grammarly before it had the free browser add-on, but now I couldn’t live without it. I will definitely consider the premium version.


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