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As Writers, Shouldn’t We Know You’re from Your?
By: Cindy Wendland
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OK, I have a pet peeve about people using the wrong word. Choosing to use it’s vs. its is not that hard. Choosing when to use you’re and your is simple too. Why do we struggle with this and keep getting it wrong? Why do I read articles in print that can’t get it right? Let’s take a little grammar lesson and move past this.

You’re is a contraction for you are. Your is possessive and shows something that belongs to you or is related to you. Use you’re when you would say you are. Use your when it relates to owning something. 

More words drive me crazy. It’s is a contraction for it is or it has. Its is possessive. I wonder if it’s going to rain today. Sitting under the tree on a hot day, we found its shade quite nice. Want to take a quiz and see how you do?

They’re and there are another misused pair that drives me crazy. Look at the log over there. Look at how they’re lifting that log off the road. Different meaning and different use. Their is possessive. They used their truck to pull the log off the road. There is a simple test you can use to make sure you have the correct word. Substitute here for there. Substitute their with our. Substitute they’re with they are. If it still makes sense, you are correct.

How are you? I’m good. Actually, you are well. My neighbor who is an English teacher/reading specialist said it’s simple to determine whether to use good or well. One word is an adverb, and one is an adjective. Good is an adjective that describes a noun, such as a good book. Well is an adverb that describes a verb. How are you? I am well.

Using the proper word in the proper place can make the message stronger. Sometimes we just need to remind ourselves of the rules. Don’t let a simple grammar mistake ruin a good marketing campaign.

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About the Author
Cindy Wendland has a background in marketing and finance. She is the creative director for an online men's health magazine, BrainBrawnBody.com, and she gets to write their leisure/travel blog. She is also a web designer helping her clients with online community engagement, websitesbywendland.com. Prior to her web years, she worked in pharmacy consulting.
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