You’re writing a paper, but suddenly you stop because you’re not sure about a grammar rule. What do you do? Many turn to grammar handbooks. Others use question-and-answer sites such as Grammarly Answers. Some questions are unique, but others have been asked hundreds of times. Wouldn’t it be nice to have the answers to some of the most frequently asked grammar and language questions in one handy guide? Here it is!
What’s the difference between fewer and less?
Can you count the items? Use fewer. Otherwise, use less!
Is it me or I?
Remove the other noun and say the sentence aloud. If it sounds wrong, switch the pronoun.
How do you punctuate items in a vertical list?
Answers vary on this issue so check your current style manual. In general, full sentences should include normal end punctuation. If single words or short phrases make up your list, be consistent about punctuation. Either consistently include punctuation at the end of each item or don’t use it for any of them.
What is the past tense of lie?
When lie is used to talk about the position of a something, the past tense is lay.
How does affect differ from effect?
Affect is a verb that means “to influence.” Though effect can be a verb in some formal contexts, it is usually used as a noun. As a noun, it means “a result.”