I have a new grammar pet peeve: the use of a possessive apostrophe to denote a plural. In just the past few weeks, I’ve seen the following on signs, menus and posters around New York City:
I have no idea why this has become so popular, but it’s everywhere I go, and it drives me nuts! I even saw it in a self-published book last week, in which the narrator mentioned how she had consulted with various doctor’s. Yes, doctor’s. I was annoyed but kept reading, only to be distracted by countless other grammatical blunders throughout the book. The storyline was interesting, but it was completely overshadowed by the errors that popped up on every page. Every single page. Because of that, I will not be recommending the book to anyone, which is a lost opportunity for the author because I love to talk about books.
If you’re going to put your work out into the world, make sure the grammar is perfect. If grammar isn’t your thing, hire an editor! Actually, you should hire an editor anyway, because we all need multiple sets of eyes to help catch what ours can no longer see after staring at the computer screen for so long.
In a future blog post, I’ll go over the most common grammatical errors I see. For now, see if you notice the apostrophe overload. Maybe together we can stop the madness!
Maria Murnane writes romantic comedies and provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Learn more at www.mariamurnane.com
This blog post originally appeared on CreateSpace.com. Reprinted with permission. © 2011 CreateSpace, a DBA of On-Demand Publishing, LLC. All rights reserved.