My In-house Editor

Sometimes when I am writing my blog or have my blog on the screen, my kids are interested in checking what I am writing or have written lately. 

My daughter likes to say: "Mom, this is not correct." She likes to correct mistakes I make. Usually they are minor mistakes that I think only native speakers would easily notice. 

Since English is not my native language, I don’t have a perfect natural feel for the language like the native speakers have. Native English speakers don’t necessarily have to learn grammar to use the language correctly. When they hear or read something, they can tell whether the words are used correctly or incorrectly based on how they sound like. 

Amy told me: "Mom, it’s not fried chickens. It’s fried chicken." She deleted the "s" from fried chickens in my post "KFC vs. McDonald’s in China." 

She added a "s" to "food scrap" I used in my post "Greening the workplace." 

Today Amy added a "s" to "getting on my nerve(s)" I had in my post "Parents, there is hope." 

I trust Amy’s judgment. Although she is only 10 years old, she is a native English speaker and a good reader, therefore has a better feel for the language. 

So I told her, "Go ahead and make changes if you find any mistakes I make." 

I like to have her read my writing and tell me what’s wrong. 

I hope someday Amy will be a writer and love to write like I do.

3 Responses

  1. Jeffrey

    One of my math teachers at Minnesota State University who is from Taiwan would always say the singular version of a word when meant the plural version.

    For example you would write out the word “choices” on the board but would say choice.

  2. roxane s.

    Qin, I have the utmost respect for you. The fact that you are a writer of English, and it’s your second language, is so amazing to me. I really respect that you’ve tackled this mysterious language that is the English language and think you have done very well with it. You are at a disadvantage but that has not detracted from your drive to write, keep a blog, and continue reading. And then you have your 10-year-old editor. How perfect! I have a 10-year-old daughter who enjoys words too. Perhaps someday they’ll meet. 🙂

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