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It’s a Grammar check

By on May 5, 2011 in Uncategorized | 2 comments

There are certain mistakes that are frequently made even by those who know better. We all learned our grammar lessons way back when, and yet we get grooving on the copy and things slip by us. I bring this up not to be preachy but to highlight common errors by way of helping people like me remember to avoid them.

Take the simple three letter combination of i-t-s. This confounds us with good reason: the rule violates grammarian logic.

Jack’s beer should be here, but its bottle broke.

The fact that the beer belongs to Jack is clearly indicated with the apostrophe. And yet, there is no apostrophe to show that the bottle belongs to the beer. This, of course, is to avoid confusion with the contraction “it’s” as in “It is coming, and then Jack will be happy.” (This is not to indicate that Jack needs the beer to be happy. It’s just that it’s Friday night and it has been a long week.)

It’s in its house.

Knowing the rule and using it are, of course, two very different things. If you don’t want to slow down while writing, then when you edit hunt for “it’s” and “its” to make sure you’ve got the one you want.


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