Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Wordie Wednesday and a Grammar Lesson

It's time for a grammar lesson taken from my blue book of grammar and punctuation.

affect vs. effect

Rule 1. Use effect when you mean bring about or brought about, cause or caused.
Example: He effected a commotion in the crowd.
Meaning: He caused a commotion in the crowd.

Rule 2. Use effect when you mean result.
Example: What effect did that speech have?

Rule 3. Also use effect whenever any of these words precede it: a, an, any, the, take, into, no. These words may be separated from effect by an adjective.
Examples: That book had a long-lasting effect on my thinking.
Has the medicine produced any noticeable effects?

Rule 4. Use the verb affect when you mean to influence rather than to cause.
Example: How do the budget cuts affect your staffing?

Rule 5. Affect is used as a noun to mean emotional expression.
Example: She showed little affect when told she had won the lottery.

Colleen Degnan Johnson
CMJ Office

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