Welcome to another Edit This® grammar lesson. In today's post, let's talk about something I see a lot of in written copy that references the COVID-19 pandemic: confusion amongst the masses on whether they should write canceled with one "L" or cancelled with two.
Technically, everyone is correct – but in saying that, be mindful that which spelling option you choose is tied directly to where you and your audience live in this crazy, beautiful world.
The American English and acceptable AP Stylebook spelling is canceled (with one L).
Cancelled (with an extra L) is acceptable in British English.
So, if you're in Dallas, Nebraska, Florida, California, North Dakota, or anywhere in the U.S. and are writing and communicating to a U.S. audience about meetings, school schedules, or sports seasons (NBA, MLB, etc.) being suspended or called off completely – write canceled.
If you're outside of the states (ex: England and Canada) and use British English, or are being published there, write cancelled.
One final point to note: there is only one spelling for cancellation.
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It's fun to tease friends on Facebook or point out errors in written copy, but any spelling or grammar error in business writing – brochures, your website content, blog posts, press releases, newsletters, a postcard, etc. – wreak havoc on your company's image.
In fact, studies consistently show that when choosing between two companies, customers prefer the one with clear and error-free written communication.
We hope you enjoyed today's blog. If you're interested in having Edit This handle your company's content writing and editing needs, give us a call today! We can write copy from scratch or spruce up what you already have. When it comes to grammar, everyone could use an extra set of eyes.
*STEVE GAMEL is the President & Owner of Edit This, a writing and editing services company located in Denton, TX. Steve handles anything involving the written word. Give him a call today to help give your business a clear voice.