What annoys you the most about writing? Is it a struggle or confusion? What element confounds you the most?
For me it is the comma. I have always detested the comma and feel that comma splice is among the most offensive forms of writing. I would rather see no commas at all than one thrown in for the heck of it. So, yeah, my crit group loves to decorate my MS with commas. I have always felt that commas (at least in some uses) are subjective. BUT they are necessary, and so, I will list the most common reasons to use a comma as a way of clearing my conscience.
1. Series of 3 or more with a single conjunction
EXAMPLE: Amy bought toothpaste, lotion, and lip gloss at the store.
2. Parenthetic expressions or nonessential clause/phrase
EXAMPLE: Cassey, on the other hand, wanted to go to the mall.
EXAMPLE: My rose garden, when in full bloom, is beautiful.
3. Introductory phrases/clauses before main clause
EXAMPLE: While I was sleeping, Mom cleaned my room.
4. Separating two independent clauses joined by a coordinating conjunction
EXAMPLE: The town shut down at noon, but I continued to window-shop.
UGH this is painful!
5. Two or more coordinating adjectives (Though, why have so many adjectives in the first place?)
EXAMPLE: The sweet, gentle child fell fast asleep.
There are loads more, but as I hate them I will stop at 5. Now what about you? What element of writing confounds you? What drives you crazy?