I hear this pretty often when I say/write something, be it in text messages or emails or on any social media/forums. What does this mean actually? I am thankfully able to convey my thoughts but I do not want to hear this anymore. Are there any thumb-rules to follow when I say/write something to make it "sound natural"?

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    This is something beyond grammar. A sentence or an utterance can be grammatical, and yet sounds very awkward. The only solution to this is, imho, read and listen to and interact with native speakers (along with materials made by native speakers) more. Sep 11, 2015 at 14:36
  • I don't even have any friends who are native speakers and with whom I can talk regularly. Is there an option for one-to-one chat with people here in this community? Sep 11, 2015 at 14:40
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    Proper use of idioms is the foundation of "sounding natural". Sep 11, 2015 at 14:40
  • @Jony, There is a community chat here. You need some reputation pts. to access. (I haven't been there though)
    – shin
    Sep 11, 2015 at 14:41
  • @JonyAgarwal I don't think we really have such a chat room (though it's not impossible). However, we have this chat room: ELL's Cabin for everyone who wants to discuss ELL stuff, or actually anything, and we have both native and non-native speakers in the room. Sep 11, 2015 at 14:43

1 Answer 1


I suggest reading more fiction (even "young adult" fiction, because what you're looking for is dialogue/conversational tone) set in the US (assuming it's US English you're talking about) and written by native US speakers.

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