I suppose I’m a badge-carrying member of the grammar police force. Four words in particular can get under my skin when misused: Your, Its, There, Very. The reason? Far too many people abuse them, and it’s really not hard to get it right.
- Your: Use this to indicate possession, as in your hat.
- You’re: Use this as a contraction for you are
- Its: Use this to indicate possession, as in its color.
- It’s: Use this as a contraction for it is
- There: Use this as a location, as in over there
- They’re: Use this as a contraction for they are
- Their: Use this to indicate possession, as in their address
When writing, try to avoid this unnecessary word. We use it regularly in conversation, but chances are there’s a better word for what you’re trying to say. Very hot could be molten. Very pretty could be stunning.
Stop the Grammar Police Before They Stop You
I won’t shame anyone for getting their grammar wrong, but it comes across as sloppy or uneducated. Think about their use just a second longer and you’re going to help you come across sharper and more intelligent! The grammar police won’t be knocking on your door.