Monday, 7 May 2018

Common Word Confusion Part 1/4

Today I’m sharing a few of those little words that tend to catch authors out, and some tips on how to remember the difference between them.

Set vs. Sat
If you are placing something down you use set. If you are taking a seat, use sat.
Here are some examples to clarify.

He set the book upon the table.
He sat on the table.

Rise/Stand/Wake (up)
There are several verbs to which writers often wish to add 'up'. However, in most cases it is unnecessary and can be removed.

He rose up  sb.  He rose
He stood up sb. He stood
He woke up sb. He woke

Ask yourself if you would ever say 'down' instead. He rose down? Clearly not. Therefore you don't need the 'up'. An exception is stand, because you can stand down; however, this has an entirely different sense and if you simple say 'stand' everyone will assume the 'up' unless you tell them otherwise.

Weary is when you are tired.
Wary is when you are uncertain.

He was weary after a long day at the office.
He was wary of entering the haunted house.