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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

You Affect Me with the Effects of Your Writing!

Do you know when to use "affect" or "effect," or do you simply guess each time you come to one of those words in your writing?
An easy way to help with remembering is to know both words can be verbs, but the only one that is ever used as a noun is "effect."  So, if the word is a noun (used as a subject, object of a preposition, direct object, predicate nominative, etc.), then it has to be "effect."

Here's the rule: 

Affect is a verb meaning "to act upon" or "to influence."

     The release of atomic energy affects (influences) the destiny of the human race.

     Did the operation on her knee affect (act upon) her knee?

Effect may be used as either a verb or a noun.  As a verb, it means "to bring about a desired result" or "to accomplish"; as a noun, it means the "result" (of an action).

     Atomic power may effect (bring about) crucial changes in industry.  (verb)

     Its varying effects (results) are difficult to ascertain.  (noun)

     Quiz Yourself:

1.  & 2.  Though eastern Kansas was seriously ___________, the windstorm had little _____________ on the western portion of the state.

3.  Did the new Student Council ___________ any changes in the cafeteria rules?

4.  She realized her speech was not having the proper ________________ on the audience.

     Answers (No peeking!)
1.   affected  (verb -- influenced)   2.  effect (noun -- result)    3.  effect (verb -- bring about)     4.  effect  (noun -- result)

If you have additional sentences about which you would like to ask, please send them, and I'll be glad to help.  If you want additional example sentences, let me know.



1 comment:

  1. Bonus Questions:
    1. A sexy, intelligent Italian man can create the _________ of fever within me -- my temperature rises and I become delirious.

    2. A hot Italian man can _________ me so much that my mind turns to mush.