Right, Rite, Wright, Write

If You Write Rite Instead of Right, What Kind of Wright Are You?

by Owen Fourie

It doesn’t matter how you right. What matters most is the message of your writing.”

Yes. There is an error in this quotation. This statement appears in several places on the Internet and is even used by at least one writer of articles to fill the about-the-author field.

It is a mistake that is easily made, but the simple duty to proofread your writing before publication would spare you the embarrassment of being regarded as an idiot.


Homophones are tricky, and care must be exercised to use the right word.

With their diverse spellings, four words in the title of this article should not cause confusion, yet they do. Let’s consider them, briefly:


Whatever is correct or proper according to an accepted standard is said to be right.

Although his friends flouted the rules of the competition, Justin argued that it was necessary to observe them; consequently, when the results were announced, they had to agree that he was right.

If you are entitled to certain benefits or privileges, it is described as your right.

In the year that he turned 65, Mr. Wright had the right to apply for a tax exemption on his property.

If you are given a set of directions to reach a certain destination, you need to know when to turn left and when to turn right.

Opposite the airport entrance on her left, she turned right to enter the county road where her aunt lived.


This word speaks of a ceremony performed in a religious setting.

The religious rite of fire-walking is an ancient practice that is still found in some parts of the world today, notably in Northern Greece and Bulgaria.


This word refers to the maker or doer of something.

Justin is a versatile person with many interests ranging from writing for the theater to making wagons; he can easily describe himself as a playwright and a wainwright.


When you use a pen or a pencil or a keyboard to record your thoughts or notes, this is the word that describes what you are doing.

While he is working on a wagon, Justin is also thinking about a new play. Observe closely, and you’ll see that he will write his ideas in his notebook.

Back to the opening statement

Of course, the opening statement should be corrected to read: “It doesn’t matter how you write. What matters most is the message of your writing.”

To counter this argument, let it be said that it most certainly does matter how you write. If you do not write correctly and properly, your reader will, more than likely, not get your message.

The question in the title

The title of this article poses a question:

If You Write Rite Instead of Right, What Kind of Wright Are You?

For the answer, we need to coin a new word. Which one would you prefer?

  • A wrong-wright
  • An error-wright
  • A flaw-wright

Perhaps you’ll have other suggestions for the wright that you do not need to be.


Your comments, observations, and questions are welcome. Are you struggling with homophones or any other aspect of grammar and correct usage? Ask here for clarification.

Here are more articles to help you with English words, grammar, and essay writing.

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