An online reference document by Andy Taylor
From Jacob Nielsen: Web writing differs from print writing to emphasize scannability. Some grammar rules are worth breaking if they improve fast comprehension.
From NY Times: Are schools undervaluing grammar, given that employers may rule out applicants with sloppy writing? Or are these employers being old-fashioned and missing out on some qualified candidates?
From Ben Yagoda in NY Times: Is it safe to talk about punctuation again? Eight years ago, Lynne Truss’s best-selling “Eats, Shoots & Leaves” took, in the words of her subtitle, a “Zero Tolerance Approach” to the subject. Although Truss’s focus on errors drew the ire, if not the fire, of grammarians, linguists and other “descriptivists,” her book was, for the most part, harmless and legitimate. Still, it overlooked a lot. Maybe more than any other element of writing, punctuation combines rules with issues of sound, preference and personal style. And as Truss didn’t adequately acknowledge, even the rules change over time. The two big players in the field are the period and the comma. I’ll start with the latter because the protocol for comma use is so complicated and contingent.
From Jon Gingerich at Lit Reactor: As someone who slings red ink for a living, let me tell you: grammar is an ultra-micro component in the larger picture; it lies somewhere in the final steps of the editing trail; and as such it’s an overrated quasi-irrelevancy in the creative process, perpetuated into importance primarily by bitter nerds who accumulate tweed jackets and crippling inferiority complexes. But experience has also taught me that readers, for better or worse, will approach your work with a jaundiced eye and an itch to judge. While your grammar shouldn’t be a reflection of your creative powers or writing abilities, let’s face it — it usually is.