Kelly and I got Hulu in November when they had their 99¢/month promotion. 99¢ is a killer price, but that price tier comes with ads (of course). As I binge-watched Brooklyn Nine-Nine—and was rudely interrupted with an ad—I came across an app I’d heard of many times: Grammarly.
Hot damn Hulu! One of your ads converted me!
So here I am, writing this into Grammarly as it wonderfully checks every word. I’m excited. I’ve considered hiring an editor many times for Brightly Colored but it, unfortunately, doesn’t align with how fast I tend to publish articles.
Grammarly helps me just… write. I have a bad habit of editing myself as I write, which frequently blocks me from expressing what I feel. Grammarly does a lot of the editing work for me, so I don’t have to. My only job is to write in the moment, then edit all those thoughts later.
Grammarly also helps me if I’m using a word too much. I know this to be an issue of mine; reusing the same adjectives over and over. Before, if I noticed I was using the same word, I’d look the word up in a thesaurus to find a suitable synonym. However, that only works some of the time since I only do it when I notice. Computers are much more reliable for this type of task.
The app’s UI for suggesting alternate words is excellent. It’ll show you the word you used, a suggestion for another term that may be better, and then an example of how more descriptive words can add meaning and flavor to a sentence.
Grammarly’s statistics are another fantastic feature. It’ll give you statistics you’ve come to take for granted like word and character count, but it also shows you the average length of words used, sentence length, and even a readability score. Unfortunately, the app doesn’t give you any suggestions on how you could improve that score, which I think would be great.
Getting content in and out is easy too. You can either write in Grammarly or write in your app of choice, then import or paste your text into the app. Once your content is checked, you can have Grammarly export a
.txt file, print your document or copy everything to your clipboard.
As I said before, I wrote this article in Grammarly, but I usually write in iA Writer. Once I’ve got a solid draft, I copy the text and paste it into Grammarly.
So far the app hasn’t made a big deal about any of my formatting. I write in Markdown with some HTML interspersed in there too. Thankfully, Grammarly plays nice with that and instead focuses on the actual content.
It’s important to note that this app can’t replace an actual human. I’m almost embarrassed to write that because it should be obvious. But Grammarly does about 90 percent of what I’m looking for, and that’s significant. It does so much more than check grammar and spelling; it helps me punctuate sentences accurately, helps me be more concise, and even use more descriptive words.
In the small amount of time I’ve been using Grammarly, I already feel my writing has improved. I definitely recommend it.