Communication is effective when we follow certain rules. These rules make written words understood. A writer should make reader's job easier by communicating what he or she wants to communicate. If you also want to write, pay respect to your readers. Don't take them for granted. Learning and understanding basic rules of English Grammar, you will surely be able to avoid ill-formed, confusing sentences. Hence, following and applying rules of English Grammar and thereby producing a good writing can help readers save their time from trying desperately to guess what you mean. This article covers top 5 rules of English Grammar.
Subject-Verb Agreement – Errors in agreement are most common mistakes made in writings. To avoid this, just follow simple rule: A singular subject requires a singular verb, and a plural subject requires a plural verb.
Wrong: Identification of these goods have been difficult.
Right: Identification of these goods has been difficult. (‘Identification’ is subject here)
Wrong: The best way to keep your children happy are to give them enough responsibilities.
Right: The best way to keep your children happy is to give them enough responsibilities. (Use a singular verb if subject is a phrase or clause)
Awkward: Neither John nor I am interested in this project.
Better: John is not interested in this project; nor am I. (If you write an awkward sentence, consider rewriting it)
Exception: Use a singular verb if a compound subject refers to same person or thing.
Example: Milk and breads is a typical breakfast for many people.
Tense – Tense refers to time. It tells when an action is happening: in present, in future, or in past. Whatever time it is, it should remain consistent throughout your whole piece of writing. There are three main tenses - Past Tense, Present Tense and Future Tense.
Here is an example of writing with mixed tenses:
Wrong: John wanted to know why Rebecca is sad, but she will not tell him.
Right: John wanted to know why Rebecca was sad, but she would not tell him.
Present tense, Past tense and Future Tense each has following four forms. The examples below will help you understand that:
Simple Past – I spoke Past Continuous – I was speaking Past Perfect – I had spoken Past Perfect Continuous – I had been speaking
Simple Present – I speak Present Continuous – I am speaking Present Perfect – I have spoken Present Perfect Continuous – I have been speaking