Friday, August 17, 2012

Fifty Shades of Grammar

Jenny Baranick has great hair, 

and the best sense of humor.

Today, Jenny is here to teach you a little about grammar:

Fifty Shades of Grammar

I haven’t read Fifty Shades of Grey because why would I want to read about something that so closely mirrors my own life? Gorgeous men buy me cars all the time. I just signed like my fiftieth sex contract. And I am so sick of private helicopter rides. But another reason I am boycotting the book is that I heard that upon its release it was riddled with spelling and grammar errors. Apparently, the publisher fixed them and re-released the book, but I hold grudges—especially grammatical ones.

I scoured the Internet for examples of the errors, but I couldn’t find any. So I decided to take quotes from Fifty Shades of Grey and make my own grammar errors. What’s wrong with these excerpts?

1.     You have to kiss a lot of frogs before you find your Prince.

A.     A lot should be one word.
B.     Prince should be lowercase, unless she means that we can all find our own star of Purple Rain.
C.     Your should be you’re.

2.     He kisses me, forcing my lips a part with his tongue, taking no prisoners.

A.     A part should be apart.
B.     I appreciate a passionate kiss, but a kiss that “tak[es] no prisoners” seems like teeth would get chipped.
C.     The first comma should be a semicolon.

3.      “The more you submit, the greater my joy – its a very simple equation.”
“Okay, and what do I get out of this?”
He shrugs and looks almost apologetic.
“Me,” he says simply.

A.     Worst deal ever!
B.     Its should be it’s.
C.     The comma after me should be after the quotation marks.

4.     My subconscious is furious, medusa-like in her anger, hair flying, her hands clenched around her face like Edvard Munchs Scream.

A.     The titles of works of art are put in quotation marks, not italicized.
B.     Munchs needs an apostrophe.
C.     It’s a bit much to include a Greek mythological character and Norwegian Symbolism painter reference in the same sentence.

Good luck!

For more fun, Missed Periods and Other Grammar Scares can be found at:

Visit her BLOG


  1. Ooooh a test for Friday!!! LOL!!

    Now Missed Periods is a great title!!

    Take care

  2. Bwa-ha-ha! And ugh. The grammar and punctuation might be awful, but the writing is worse. Love the title of your book, though!

  3. All I have to say is that Jenny is hysterical!! Thanks for hosting her, Theresa!

  4. I loooove this post! And the title of the book is SPOT ON! :)) Thanks for having Jenny over, THeresa. I would've loved to have her as an English teacher. She's hilarious!


  5. Funny post. No one ever wants to talk about the tampon sex scene. They even have an online meme for it. For what it's worth, the porn aspect is pretty stimulating. Nothing like "skin on skin" when Christian Grey is doing a menstruating Anastasia from behind, with her hands on the sink.

    Sorry if I grossed out anyone. But I didn't write it. I'm just summarizing this smash hit for everyone.

  6. Michael, now you've spoiled questions 5-8 on the second quiz.

  7. Grammar is probably far from anyone's mind reading 50 Shades.

  8. Love the title. And I agree with Shelly. :)

  9. Oooh, a quiz. But where are the answers? How can we check to make sure we got it right?

    (Although, I used the wrong you're/your on FB yesterday, Theresa. Am I mortified!)

  10. Great quiz! Though I'm also curious: How does one check one's answers?

  11. Theresa, thank you so much for hosting my quiz. And, more important, for liking my hair!

  12. LOVE the title "Missed Periods"! Ha! And I've no desire to read 50 Shades, so thanks for letting me know just how shallow some of the book is. I'm not surprised, given what I had heard, but you've confirmed my suspicions.

    Don't know if I am supposed to give this away or not, but here are a couple of things: says, "As a noun and adverb, a lot is frequently misspelled as alot."

    Grammar Monster says, "The word alot does not exist.
    'A lot' means a large extent or to a large extent (more below).
    'To allot' means to apportion something (more below)."

    I have seen "a lot" and "alot" appear in a text dictionary (though I can't cite which publisher). However, since (100 years or more ago) I learned that "a lot" is correct, that's what I stick to.

    Regarding mythology, shouldn't Medusa have a cap on Medusa-like, since Medusa is a name?

    I absolutely hate typos and glaring grammar issues, especially in professional publications. Those mistakes really detract from the work and bring down the credibility of the writers, editors, etc. I know I make "a lot" of mistakes, too, usually when I'm in a hurry or can't see well, which drives me CRAZY. I go back and read the errors I missed and turn into Edvard Munch's image in "The Scream."

    Interestingly enough, BTW, Wikipedia puts Munch's titles in italics, not quotes.

    The Guardian newspaper doesn't use italics OR quotes:

    Then there is the plethora of sites and references that use the single quotation mark. Just Google "The Scream" to see what I mean.

  13. Grammar is definitely important. I've read several published novels that had many grammatical errors, which made me wonder why the copy editors didn't catch them. Grammatical mistakes can be very distracting.

  14. I enjoy grammar quizzes, even early in the morning. :)

    Have a great weekend.

  15. Too funny... those excerpts are so hilarious... now I know why I've been avoiding the book:) Loved your grammar quizz

  16. Jenny's book should be fun based on this post.

  17. Brilliant post! I choked over most of 50 Shades of Grey because of the errors and banality and skimmed the rest! Just one grammatical point, however - in the UK it is definitely 'a lot' and not 'alot'!

  18. I think the "good luck" is for anyone who tries to read the book. I appreciate a good metaphor but not when you have to use a machete to wade through it:

    "My subconscious is furious, medusa-like in her anger, hair flying, her hands clenched around her face like Edvard Munchs Scream."

    What the what??

    And, yes, I do believe Munchs' would have an apostrophe to signify the possessive. Wouldn't "Scream" be in quotes?

    When you're dealing with a metaphor like that or dialogue like this:

    “The more you submit, the greater my joy – its a very simple equation.”

    “Okay, and what do I get out of this?”

    He shrugs and looks almost apologetic.

    “Me,” he says simply.

    ...who worries about grammar?

  19. EP, it's a mess on so many level. Which to choose?

  20. The first answer to #3 made me LOL - as did her book's title! :-)
    Some Dark Romantic

  21. JENNY ~
    I recorded my answers on a small piece of paper as I read the questions. Like The Golden Eagle, my answers were all correct: B,A,B,B. (I know you know I would answer 'em all correctly 'cause, despite being a dude, I ain't no dumby. ;o)

    HOWEVER, there was one small difference between The Golden Eagle's answers and mine. For the third question I actually wrote:
    3) B (& C).

    Yes, of course I knew the answer YOU were looking for was "B". And, yes, of course I knew that is "technically" correct. BUT... I beg to differ! Although the so-called "experts" tell us that the comma should be inside the closing quotation mark, for years I have argued that this should NOT be considered the "correct" way of doing it. (And the same goes for periods too, as in: I said, "Sometimes the experts are full of horse manure." Yeah, I wrote it right, but it SHOULD be WRONG! That period really SHOULD be OUTSIDE of the closing quotation mark!)

    In fact, I feel so strongly about this that I once addressed it in one of my own blog bits. If you want the link to it, in order to read my argument in opposition to what is currently considered the "correct" way of incorporating punctuation with quotation marks, just let me know and I'll post a link for you.

    You know me, Jenny:

    I'm a rebel and I'll never ever be any good
    I'm a rebel 'cause I never ever do what I should

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

  22. LOL @#4! Did I miss the quiz? These are hilarious--unless she's dating Prince the rock star--and I have to confess, a big, no HUGE!, part of the reason I still haven't read the 50 Shades books is because of the sloppy craft--LOL!!! It's not fair, I know, but I can't turn internal editor off. (And I'd probably be screaming "worst deal ever" the whole time, too. ;o)

  23. Missed Periods should not be missed, her grasp of grammar is great. Her sense of humour is non-pareil. Thanks for this post.

  24. I'm usually pretty good with grammar, but I tend to overlook a lot of errors when I'm reading if I get sucked into a story. When I get bored with the writing I can be brutal.
    If 50 Shades had the humor exhibited here I might want to read it, but otherwise I'll probably be forgoing this book.

    Wrote By Rote

  25. When I was in school (many years ago) we were always told 'into' was one word, but 'on to' was two words. Now the latter always seems to be written as 'onto' but it still makes me cringe!

  26. *shakes head* That girl is so freaking hilarious. Hello, Theresa. *waves* Jenny instructed me to visit, so here I am. Nice place you've got here.


  27. I haven't read 50 Shades, but I've been hearing mixed reactions. Doesn't really sound like something I might want to read. That was a fun little test (did I really say that?!) and I wrote down my answers!

  28. B, A, B, and B. Love grammar nit pickery and Jenny's blog!

  29. Hi, Theresa, Hi, Jenny,

    What a fun quiz. Thankfully I got them all... I think. But I still want your book Jenny!

    Thanks for hosting, Theresa,

    I hope all is well with you.

  30. Bummer, I got one wrong. :( Fun post, Theresa.

  31. A great sense of humour in this fun post.

  32. Ha ha!! This is awesome! And so is Jenny!!