Posted on Jun 17, 2013 | 3 comments

openclirart.org

openclirart.org

Spelling bees are cute, aren’t they? Children gathering to demonstrate a talent that hasn’t been relevant since before they were born. This is comparable to me taking part in a typewriter competition when I was in grade school 20 years ago. Typewriters were largely irrelevant at that time just like spelling on the fly is largely irrelevant now. Spell check has killed the spelling B, even if society hasn’t come to grasp with that fact now.

openclipart.org

openclipart.org

I’ve thought considerably about what role proper spelling and grammar play in my personal journal. When I was handwriting my journals they played only a small role. I’ve never been a great speller and I wasn’t about to pull down the ol’ Websters to correctly spell a word that few- if any- other human beings would ever read. Journals and diaries of ages past have always been filled with poor English (and other languages, I’m sure), which is okay. The words aren’t about correctness, they are about capturing history in a very unique and powerful way.

But now things are different. When I write in my journal on my phone, my Android keyboard (Swiftkey) automatically fixes misspelled words. Sometimes it is harder to write a misspelled word than a proper one! My computer similarly scolds me when I write a word incorrectly since I use Google Chrome and it has a built in spell check.

Still, incorrect spelling happens occasionally and grammar is often all over the place. Those red underlined words often get ignored when I write because I am focusing on my thoughts rather than something less relevant, such as spelling.

So, if you want my opinion, don’t sweat the spelling and grammar. It will only distract from the real purpose of journaling. Few, if any, will ever read or notice the errors.

I know that some of you are perfectionists and could never commit such a heinous crime as leaving words misspelled or out of place.

That’s okay, this post isn’t for you. You have your own ways.

But for the rest of you, let your words flow! Leave the proper writing for school papers and let your journal pages fall a little rough here and there.

Note: I have never been so aware of my spelling and grammar as with this post. I’ve checked it several times and am sure that there are still errors. I hope that you will forgive me as you can tell I am most definitely not a perfectionist!
  • Polly Anna Watson

    Sam, I only worry about spelling, grammar, and punctuation if I just can’t stand seeing the red squigglies. (See? That word is underlined….!) Of course, since journaling is just for me–the person writing the journal–if I can live with mistakes, then who cares? If I’m going to post something for others to read, such as a blog, I’ll take more time and be sure I edit. But a journaler should never get wrapped up in such things—unless said journaler is a perfectionist and just can’t help it….! :)

    • http://www.easyjournaling.com Sam

      I know it can be hard, but try and not worry about the squiggles! Maybe you can make a game out of it where it isn’t a good entry unless there are at least 10 red lined words :D

      • Polly Anna Watson

        I found it really funny last night as I was journaling….I noticed that I was automatically correcting errors! I guess I’m more of a perfectionist in that area than I thought!!!! I say I don’t worry, but apparently I DO!!! LOL!