Even if you aren’t a grammar geek, the way you use words makes a lasting impression on people. Grammar mistakes can make others perceive you in a negative light.
Here are some of the most common grammar mistakes to avoid.
- Bring and take
When using these words, think in terms of direction. People bring things toward you and take things away from you.
- Affect and effect
“Affect” is a verb that means to do something that causes an “effect,” which is a noun. It may be easier to think that the “a” in “affect” is also used in “action,” which is what a verb does.
- Overuse of apostrophes
Apostrophes indicate one of two things: possession or letters missing. They don’t belong on plural words. When you have more than one of something, there’s no need to add an apostrophe.
- Lay and lie
Generally, if you can replace the word in question with some variant of “put” or “place,” you should use “lay.” If not, use “lie.”
- Borrow and lend
Someone doesn’t borrow something to someone, but from someone, as in “I borrowed her calculator.” Likewise, lending is something only a giver does. Just remember, the person doing the giving lends and the person receiving something borrows it.