Feats of daring-do

Of course, this should be derring-do. But the misspelling is understandable given the meaning of the word and its origins.

https://pixabay.com/en/biker-motorcycle-stunt-man-person-384921/Derring-do is pleasantly archaic and often used humorously in modern writing.* It means actions showing heroic courage or feats of daring.

The word originated from the late Middle English dorryng do (meaningdaring to do’) being misprinted as derrynge do in the 16th-century editions of John Lydgate’s Chronicle of Troy.

The modern usage and spelling is usually most associated with Sir Walter Scott’s Ivanhoe.

*I would love to proofread a story where derring-do doesn’t look out of place. I am imagining pirates. Or an old-fashioned superhero.


CV spelling mistakes

I was sat, bleary-eyed, reading the i (a British newspaper) this morning. In it, there was a list of the top ten CV spelling mistakes. The original source for the feature can be found here. Almost one-third of CVs contain at least one spelling error.

The number one most frequently misspelt word is responsibility, followed by liaise and university. The list doesn’t give examples of the incorrect spellings that were found in order to form the top ten.

There are some other examples of misspellings on the website, and I have had a look at what Microsoft Word makes of them. They are all subject to a red squiggly line or to automatic correction (apart from travelling – the spellchecker, my dictionary and I disagree with Adzuna: the legitimate British spelling is with two ls). My advice, therefore, is to make sure you take note of what your spellchecker is trying to tell you.

However, I wouldn’t rely on your spellchecker completely. It can tell you if the word is spelled incorrectly, but it can’t tell you if it is the appropriate word. It isn’t going to pick up on the correct usage of their or there, your or you’re, and its or it’s. It might not recognise the correct spelling of an unusual word. And I’m not even going to mention the poor grammatical suggestions spellchecker makes…

Make sure you are thorough when you read what you have written. Read for sense as well as for the errors. If the work is of importance, get someone else to look at it for you. When it is your own writing, it is hard to read what is there instead of what you expect to be there.

Your CV is of great importance. It is a potential employer’s first introduction to you. Take that extra time and make the extra effort. It’ll be worth it.