This is a guest post from an awesome freelance writer we work with named Mary Cullen. To learn more about Mary, check out her portfolio at: https://marycullen.contently.com/
There are many common mistakes that are made when people are writing. Whether writing a letter, an essay, an article or an email, it is important to be conscious of what you are writing. Here are 5 common mistakes people make that can be easily avoided and some simple examples to help you remember.
Your / You’re
Your and you’re are commonly used incorrectly when writing. Understanding the difference between the two can help you to avoid making this mistake. Your is possessive meaning belonging to you. Examples of your would be: your dog, your car, your house. You’re is a contraction meaning you are. Examples of you’re would be: you’re beautiful, you’re an inspiration, you’re a hard worker.
Two / Too / To
When looking at the words to, too and two, the two is the least of the problems when using these words incorrectly in writing. This is because the word two is a number and is only used as a number. The words to and too however are more commonly misused. Remembering that too is an adverb that can mean “excessively” or “also”, can help to avoid using it improperly. Examples of too would be: The soup is too hot., or She will be going too. To is a preposition and has multiple meanings. Examples of to would be: I am going to the movies., The toy belongs to the child.
Their / There / They’re
These words, even though they sound the same when spoken, provoke different meaning when used properly in writing. Their is possessive and shows ownership. Examples of their would be: Their cat is in our bushes., We are going to their house. There is an adverb and shows a place or direction. Examples of there would be: Let’s sit over there., We are going there tomorrow. They’re is a contraction meaning they are. Examples of they’re would be: I know they’re going as well., They’re at the store already.
It’s / Its
The use of these two words is seen incorrectly in writing consistently. As simple as it may seem to get it right, it seems just as simple to make this mistake. It’s is a contraction meaning it is or it has. Check your sentence. Replace it’s with it is or it has and see if it makes sense. Examples of it’s would be: It’s raining in the city today., Wear a jacket when it’s cold out. Its shows possession. Examples of its would be: The cat ate its food., The tree lost its leaves.
Affect / Effect
The confusion around the use of these words is real and extremely common. Knowing the difference between the two is key to avoiding misusing them. Affect is a verb and will cause a change in something or influence it. Examples of affect would be: The amount of rain will affect the time we leave., Your experience will affect whether or not you are considered for the position. Effect is a noun and can be usually thought of as the result of change. Examples of effect would be: A good night’s sleep can have a positive effect on your health., The effect from the medicine was immediate.
Grammar mistakes within the English language happen every minute of every day. With the use of contractions, homophones, silent e, and so much more, writing can become confusing. Find examples of the words that confuse you, write them down for reference, and go and write with confidence.
Mary Cullen is a freelance writer living in Tampa Florida. She likes to write about marketing, lifestyle, health and fitness. To hire Mary for freelance writing assignments email firstname.lastname@example.org