As I’ve been doing research while getting ready to write a book, I’ve been browsing other books on writing and writing-related subjects. I’ve found some great ones, and then I’ve been shocked to find others that are very sub-par. The people who have written some of these have touted classes they teach and retreats they host to help others write. The problem is, these people have no writing skills. Be very careful who you buy from.
One author offers a glamorous weekend retreat with all kinds of bonuses. However, the book they have written is poorly edited and contains poor grammar and punctuation. She has written several books. And she is TEACHING writing? I’m sorry, but I’m not wasting my money paying someone to teach me something that they have not even been able to accomplish in their own book!
Another author offers a book to help you become successful by writing. Right on the cover are 3 sentences that are grammatically incorrect. That is NOT the person to be teaching YOU how to be successful through writing.
Punctuation matters! Grammar matters! Spelling matters! Being concise matters! Have you ever read something that has endlessly long sentences full of “filler”? It makes for very tedious reading. I read the book from the first author, the one with the wonderful weekend retreat. I almost couldn’t finish reading, it was so tedious, but I did, so I could learn about what she offers for the price she asks. (and also learn what mistakes not to make.)
The point is if you are going to pay good money, be sure you are getting something worth that money. Look at their website, see how they write there. If possible, borrow their book from the library, or read excerpts where you can. Some reviews may mention the failings, but the sad fact is that many people don’t even know what good spelling, grammar, and punctuation look like anymore.
So before you give over your hard-earned money, do your due diligence. Check out testimonials, get referrals, check out writing that is available to you and make sure you don’t waste your money.