For those who aren't familiar with Grammarly, it's a software that polishes your writing using artificial intelligence. As an editor, I have always been sceptical; I could never understand how a piece of online software could perfect every written document, and truth be told, it can't, but it has its benefits.
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Grammarly can be an absolute lifesaver in some areas of writing. For example, you may run a weekly blog, submit features and articles to magazines, or write endless essays for course assignments, so Grammarly may come into play in those circumstances.
However, suppose you are an aspiring author with a finished manuscript. In that case, Grammarly cannot offer the deep developmental edit your novel may need, and it does not provide the same detailed service a professional copy editor could provide. Furthermore, as Grammarly uses artificial intelligence, it doesn't know the ins and outs of the publishing world; therefore, it can only suggest generic solutions to your errors and mistakes.
While skimming social media, I have discovered that many freelancers, new writers, and published authors use Grammarly for all sorts of written work, but using this online software for everything will not bring you the desired results.
This article will provide you with the dos and don'ts to keep in mind when using Grammarly, because when it's used efficiently, it can bring excellent results to writers and freelancers alike.
Do: Use Grammarly for Essays, Assignments, and Dissertations
If you're a college or university student or simply take an online course, you probably don't need to hire a professional editor, unless you want to, of course. Grammarly is the perfect software for polishing essays, assignments, and dissertations, and it's a relatively cheap subscription ($29.95 - approx. £23.10) if you're a student trying to get by and do well. You can also use Grammarly for free, but you can't access as many features as you can when you sign up for Premium.
Do: Use Grammarly for Blog Posts (Like this One!)
Whether you're an experienced blogger or fairly new to the blogging scene, Grammarly is great for perfecting blog posts. As your blog will be published for the online world to see, you want your content to be as polished as possible, but as it takes time and hard work to earn money from blogging, you may not wish to pay an editor for every blog post. For this reason, Grammarly is the ideal solution here.
Do: Use Grammarly for Freelance Articles and Journalistic Features
For all the freelancers and journalists out there, Grammarly is an ideal piece of software that could help you get your work accepted by magazines and newspapers. However, freelancing and journalism is a tough world, so there's no guarantee that your first few submissions will be accepted, so using Grammarly for your articles and features instead of hiring an expensive editor may just save you a few pennies!
Do: Use Grammarly for Fanfiction and Writing for Fun
Fanfiction and casual writing is a great way to relax and express your creativity, but as the purpose or intent of these activities isn't to earn some kind of income, you probably don't want to spend much on perfecting the content. For this reason, Grammarly may be your best option.
Do: Use Grammarly When Editing Your Manuscript Before Hiring a Professional Editor
If you are an aspiring author who has just finished writing your novel, you may question your next steps. Some writers recognise that their work needs developmental editing before they query agents or self-publish, while others may need line or copy editing. Grammarly can act as a great stepping stone as it can iron out some of the major errors and wordiness before you hire a professional editor. Using Grammarly before the professional editing stage will make your work clearer and smoother for the editor, ultimately saving you time and money.
Don't: Rely on Grammarly to Polish the Entirety of Your Manuscript
However, some writers believe that Grammarly, or ProWritingAid for that matter, is the only thing they need to perfect their manuscript, and while this may be the case for a few geniuses, it's not for the rest of us. Even professional editors like myself need editors! Some manuscripts need some form of developmental editing to enhance the plot and characters, and others need line or copy editing to improve the writing style, syntax, and the overall flow. Currently, only the human brain knows what makes a novel shine in the publishing world, so make sure you only use Grammarly as a stepping stone for your manuscript.
If you are interested in signing up to Grammarly, follow the link here to get started!
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