What language do they speak in Great Britain? English. What language do they speak in America? English. So what’s the problem?
Well, it’s not a problem, exactly, but there are a number of subtle differences between British English and American English, many of them involving spelling. Keep in mind that neither spelling is incorrect; it’s just important to choose the appropriate spelling for your intended audience.
British or American English, a few of the most common examples*:
British: -ise (organise, recognise) (Note: some British words do use “ize”)
American: -ize (organize, recognize)
British: -our (colour, favourite)
American: -or (color, favorite)
British: -re (theatre, centre)
American: -er (theater, center)
British or American English, Bonus
This one doesn’t fit one of the general categories, but is very common:
* This is by no means an exhaustive list! There a number of other general rules and specific quirks. When in doubt, check the dictionary!
Rachel is a full-on, hardcore grammar freak. Her favorite punctuation marks are parentheses, em dashes, and ellipses. She still loves adverbs but is trying to wean herself off of them. And she truly believes that it’s okay to split an infinitive. In addition to her grammar obsession, Rachel writes light contemporary romance – occasionally with a paranormal twist – and is published in short fiction.