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Thread: It's...

  1. #21

    Re: No apologies from here.

    When I was 17 I didn't know the diff between "it's" and "its." That took a lot of effort to teach myself. Now, it's easy, but I never look down my nose at younger writers who don't get it. Just because you don't get it at 19 doesn't mean you're unworthy of trying to write. It just means you need to read a book or two on grammar and learn the basics. Hard as it is to believe, the basics come easy. It doesn't make any of us superior for finally having figured it out. Please read, "On Writing Well," by Zinsser. It's all you'll ever need and you won't have to feel like a worm because someone else figured it our before you.

  2. #22

    Re: No apologies from here.

    Okay, folks, listen up. I think, Lisa, if you re-read what I wrote, I not only gave the answer, I laid out the rationale in a color-by-the-numbers picture. I'm not sure I could have made it any clearer.

    I'm sure, long ago, people here figured out that I have a real bug about poor grammar, structure, spelling and lazy writing. It should come as no surprise then that I take issue with anyone who asks a question, gets the answer (in triplicate) and then determines to argue that those who answered are wrong. I'm not a great devotee of the argument that harsh words make for thick skins and better writers. Quite frankly, I find that to be a bunch of BS. I believe in the teaching/mentoring approach. But you should know that sometimes gentle words don't get the point across. (If a baby is reaching for the open flame, you don't softly say, 'No, sweety. Fire burn.' You yell it out loud and sharp. Get the babe's attention and save the little fingers, then explain, 'Fire bad.') I also appreciate that people tend to get defensive and go on the attack when they feel they have been attacked.

    Allison, you have not been attacked by anyone here. Several people have tried to explain to you, in several different ways, the difference between its and it's, when and where each is properly used and I have tried to explain in depth the reasoning behind this. It's up to you to take the information or not. What you take from this forum is totally up to you - good, bad, or otherwise. Likewise, what anyone chooses to bring to this forum is totally up to them - good, bad, or otherwise. I would hope, in my own naive way, that everyone would choose to bring good and positive things to the forum.

    In closing, I will offer you the advice my son insists that I give you, that I often give to others, and that he, himself, has heard many times and in many forms:

    If you don't have one, buy a dictionary. It will serve you well in more ways than one.
    If you don't stay open to learning, you won't learn.
    It is okay, it is imperative in fact, to question authority. (But, if you argue against the facts, you are destined to lose the battle.)

    Other advice from my son's corner:
    You might also consider a thesaurus and a copy of Strunk and White's 'Elements of Style' or some other style manual. These are important reference books. Get them soon and use them often.

    One final comment from me: At 19, you still have your back against the wall. If you want to tear down the wall to get to the riches on the other side, turn around. The people coming behind you aren't trying to stab you in the back, they want to help you get to that other side.


  3. #23

    Re: No apologies from here.

    I'm no spring chicken, but its and it's have always confused me, and its (No pun intended) wonderful to get the answer here. Thank you for asking the question! And thank the answers - the comparison to his and hers really helped.
    And if you are a young writer you show a maturity beyond your years in asking questions to clarify until you get something. DO NOT CHANGE. By asking questions until you understand things, you will be one jump ahead of the rest of the world as they lose time, money, health, etc, because they were too embarrassed (sp?) to admit they didn't understand something and let an annoyed tone of voice shut them up.
    Good luck with your writing.

  4. #24

    Re: No apologies from here.

    I'm sorry Roy, and Reese, but I repeatedly said thank you for your help, and I understand now. But you don't seem to realized that. I wasn't trying to argue that I was right, I was just wondering why the answer was what it was. My confidence in this site has been shattered. Goodbye.

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