I have books in print with spelling errors (horrors!) and they were mine. I spelled drought as draught in one place in RECLAIM MY LIFE and mandoline as mandolin in one of my cookbooks. My editors didn’t catch it, either. How do we prevent spelling errors?

We already know spelling checkers in computers are handy but not dependable. As the cartoon says, Spellcheck is my worst enema. ☺ A dictionary and a good proof reader (AKA Alpha Reader, critique partner) are essential.

I once read (and still own) a book titled 1001 Commonly Misspelled Words by Robert Magnan and Mary Lou Santovec. It’s a strong reference and I recommend it. In addition to the common homophones like there/their/they’re, the book is filled with tricky spellings, arranged alphabetically. Here are a few words I often see misspelled:

  • epitome
  • eligibility
  • broccoli
  • cemetery
  • rigueur
  • niece
  • grammar
  • embarrass
  • separate
  • diarrhea
  • accommodate
  • recommend
  • cursory
  • imagine

Are there words that trip you up? If so, consult a dictionary (online or in print). Hone your spelling skills by playing word games (Scrabble®) and reading books like 1001 Commonly Misspelled Words.

And by all means, if you see a misspelling in one of my posts (we all do it!), tell me!

Happy writing.