On Writing: Is It Just Me?

This week I took three vacation days in addition to my regular off days. No, I'm not away on holiday. I'm holed up in my writing room hauling butt to make a deadline. I shouldn't be blogging, but needed to rest my brain for three seconds.

So, am I the only one in the universe who continually misspells certain words? I'm talking a specific word time and again. Two specific words spring to mind. Necessary and bureau. I don't care how many times I type those words, I never spell them correctly. I know because there's always a squiggly red line beneath them, well, when I'm working in Word anyway. Here in Blogger they were highlighted yellow. Line, highlight, red, yellow... they all scream, "Wrong!"

Thank goodness for spellchecker. I don't know what it is. Why I always misspell the same words. Some weird mental block.

What about you? Are there any words that continually trip you up?

Or is it just me?


Cynthia said…
Oh no, it's not just you. Of course some of my problem now is a really bad habit I foster all through high school. I insisted upon writing certain words (colour, honour, neighbour) according to the British spelling. But necessary is one I have to think about, detective oddly enough is one that I usually spell wrong too. Want to guess how annoying that is when I have my heroine constantly referring to my hero as "detective" instead of his just to spite him.
Mary Stella said…
I can't spell Cincinatti correct the first time. Ever. In fact, I just had to look it up before I typed it here to make sure I did so correctly. I get mixed up with whether it's nn and t or n and tt or whatever.
Beth Ciotta said…
I hear you on those British spellings, Cynthia. Although it's not something I personally do. Speaking of spellings leftover from our youth... I grew up spelling the color you get when you mix black and white--grey. I'm pretty sure most people spell it gray.

Oh. Another mental glitch word. 'License'. Or is it 'Lisence'. Neither of those look right. Getting the dictionary... Hey! I was right the first time! Although it says 'license' OR 'licence'. Great. So which one's the right one?
Beth Ciotta said…
Good one, Mary. That would trip me up, too.

Okay. I'm officially procrastinating. Must get back to the WIP. 'Procrastinating'. Sure. THAT I can spell.
flchen1 said…
Nope, not just you... I'm not the world's best speller, that's for sure. I tend to get tripped up by words that may or may not have double letters (like necessary or recommendation or accommodate or committee...) and ones that might or might not have an extra "e"--judgment, refridgerator--that doesn't look right somehow...
Anyway, spellchecker is a God-send, as is dictionary.com!
Beth Ciotta said…
Now that you mention it, flchen1, the words you noted often trip me up as well. And funny you should mention dictionary.com! I just used it five minutes ago!

BTW, I'm not procrastinating. I'm taking a mental break. Feel better now. Back to the WIP.
Cynthia said…
The colour you get when you mix black and white is grey. Gray is a last name, not a colour. Oh geez, I've slipped back into Queen's English. See I decided I wasn't weird enough in high school, so I started writing that way just to push it a little further. Too bad I didn't realize then that it's also a Canadian thing, I would have had a better arguement - since I was born just south of Buffalo and have a Canadian-light accent.

I think we're onto something with the double letters because that is was gets me most of the time.
danetteb said…
Lol...Don't worry I'm always messing up congratulations, I love that its a word that can be shortened.*g*
Bob said…

Or is it maneuver?

Yep, it's the second one. It's always the second one. And I was the eight-grade Jackson County, Ohio spelling bee champion.

I see the mention of "accommodate" above, and I always remember that word because I missed it when I was in the fifth grade and doing the county spelling bee. I remember it now as "commode," which I can spell, and it's related in some kind of incommodious way...or not.

I forget the words I missed in the 6th and 7th grades.

And in the state spelling bee, I came in 14th after missing "monocle." I spelled it "monacle." If only I could have seen what I was saying.

steve said…
Nah, I'm sure everybody has a few habitually misspelled words. People are people, after all, and people are creatures of habit. I don't have a lot of spelling problems, but I confuse i-before-e words from time to time. *shrug*

A bigger problem for me is that I frequently make typos due to typing too fast. I'll transpose letters and wind up with yuo or adn or knwo... and those will pop out in Word as Evil Misspelled Words, or even - BONUS! - will auto-correct.

Now if only Word would auto-correct when I use the wrong form of a word.

"You like that, to?"
"Is that you're cake?"

Word doesn't catch those. And the thing is, once again, those errors are mostly due to speed. I think most of us know the correct form of the words, but still manage to accidentally mangle our prose. Nevertheless, this is exactly the kind of error that makes a writer look ignorant. *shudder* I so hate looking ignorant.
Beth Ciotta said…
Cynthia, funny you should mention Canada. I didn't think you lived in England, but --because of the spelling of 'colour' and such--I thought maybe you were Canadian. Not so, huh? So where did you pick up the English spellings?
Beth Ciotta said…
Danette.... 'Congrats' it is! :)

Bob, really? The second one. I would have thought the first. Gak. Obviously, I am not one who performed well in spelling bees. I was fascinated by your stories though. Er. And your association between 'accommodate' and commode'. Heh.
Beth Ciotta said…
Sing it with me, Steve... "I before E except after C." Sadly, that's the only way I remember. Although there are exceptions to the rule. Dratted exceptions.

Ah, yes. Transposing letters. I do that quite a bit. Always when I'm typnig too fsat. :) Those are generally the times I also forget to reread or spell check before hitting send. Generally in rambling emails to my critique partners. Then they reply and I see all my mistakes and, boy, do I feel, as you said, ignorant. *sigh*

I'm pretty good about keeping to/too straight, but when writing fast I do at times mix up 'your' and 'you're'.

But, here's the best. Sometimes I reread a part of my manuscript, fast first draft, and I'll stumble upon a word that's spelled correctly, but not the word I meant. Something weird like...

Barney thought about his scruffy appearance, the fish that he’d slept until noon.

When I'd intended 'fact' not 'fish'.

What's up with that??
Roni said…
I always have to recite "i before e except after c" to myself when I'm writing certain words like receive and believe.
Cynthia said…
Where did I pick up the English spellings? I think most of it was from all the English music I was buying when I was in high school. I feel in love with Duran Duran and they put out enough fan books, most written for the English market so that's where I saw it first.

Why did I start writing that way? Because I was (and still am) very weird. I mean, writing stories and bringing books from home weren't enough - I had to make sure I was even more odd so that's what I did. The funny thing? Of all the teachers I had in the last two years of high school not one corrected me.
Lyvvie said…
Simple words like their and friends get me every time and I'm forever click editing those. Plus I'm an American in Britain and have the whole extra "u" to worry about.

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