Use Grammarly's online plagiarism checker because you don't want to be caught with someone else's words.
I have been following Grammarly on Facebook for a while, and their posts have brought me both laughs and enlightenment. Now, I am using their grammar checking service for my writing. To show everyone how it works, I've made some screenshots. The writing I used is some random word vomit that I typed in about three minutes that is about a character in She Came From the Sea. Here is what I used for an example:
Simone thrashed in the ocean with the violence of a Bedlamite. She was only up to her calves, and she screeched at the sunset through her clenched teeth. As she whipped around, slamming her fists into the water, creating a wave, a chunk of hair fell out of her head from the follicles.
Her beauty was already beginning to fade. Like the dying light, it was leaving her, slipping away to and place you cannot grasp. It was unbearable – she was the wilting wallflower before all this happened. Too quiet to attract attention, too modest to even try to be presentable. She was a shrinking violet until she grabbed her encounter and she never regretted it.
Eating the flesh and scales gave her the boost, the drive to live and thrive. She was able to pursue whatever she desired, and it was always for the good of the scholarly world. Sure, she went after men, but her passion was short-lived there.
Soon, her vitality was going to drain away from her. Sanity was one thing to be overlooked if it hits you right, but to be a decaying skeleton? She wouldn’t die right away, she’d lose her energy first. She’d linger in her house and become bedridden. Then she’d decompose. Pieces of her would fall clean off the bone before she’d die. She would be begging for death and this is all because her supply has been depleted.
But what did she expect? One does not simply run into mermaids daily, or hunt them.
Open mouthed, she unleashed a primal scream at the sunset.
It's far from perfect, but for three minutes of typing, I was good enough, and I didn't re-read what I had typed. Then, I ran it through Grammarly.
Behind this active box, you can see that my score, at that point, was 100 of 100. I corrected all the issues that the tool identified for me. Now, I clicked the Plagiarism button that is right beside the Start Review button. I like this feature because I want don't want to unintentionally use phrases that have been used before.
After that, I am finished! My little bit of writing is much better because of this process. The mistakes that Grammarly identified were not caught by Microsoft Word 2010. This tool works as a second set of eyes. For me, it is highly valuable because I don't have a writing support group that I can hand off my writing to every week. Yes, one day I'll remember to use the right "wander" when people are strolling the halls, pronouns won't elude me, and I won't repeat the same word seven times on a page (it has happened). Grammarly is there to help me along and explain why something is incorrect. If you're like me, reading grammar books doesn't always cut it. I need to see the corrections in action from my own writing.
Your high school English teacher was right - grammar is important in today's society, and it is one of the most difficult skills to master.