Grammar Grappler 3: Peak or Peek?

I still lose sleep over an executive tips book I wrote in 1999 where in the 13th chapter I recommend presenters take a “sneak peak” at their notes whenever needed.

I didn’t catch it. The editor didn’t catch it. The publisher didn’t catch it. 

In fact, you know who spotted it first?

My mother.

I was so proud of this first book, and I gave my parents some of the first copies fresh from the publishing house. No kidding—within about two minutes of thumbing through it, my mother said, “Oh no, Mandi, did you see this?” And I was mortified. I didn’t feel as if I could actually sell the book now because I knew people would be purchasing a big ol’ grammar mistake.

For the record, it was supposed to be “sneak peek.” I knew that. In fact, I can remember my middle school English teacher sharing the trick about viewing the two e’s in peek as two eyes looking at something. That little spelling tip works. But what happens all too often is the spelling of sneak affects the spelling of peek to peak, and it totally changes the meaning to nonsense. A peek is a quick glance. A peak is a high point such as on a mountain.

Taking a sneak peek at this blog can prevent the same from happening to you.


To customize a keynote or professional development session that will have your audience laughing and learning, contact Mandi Stanley.

Certified Speaking Professional Mandi Stanley works with business leaders who want to boost their professional image by becoming better speakers and writers through interactive high-content keynotes, breakout sessions, workshops, technical writing seminars, and fun proofreading classes. 

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