Monday, 2 July 2018

Common Word Confusion Part 2/4

It’s time for a few more editing quick tips for fiction writers. These are words that authors tend to confuse.

Born vs. Borne
The only thing to remember here is that born is used for anything relating to birth and borne is for everything else.

He must think that I was born yesterday.
After all that he had borne, he was exhausted.

Farther vs. Further
The key point to remember here is distance. If any kind of travel or physical distance is involved, it is farther. If you are meaning something 'additional' it is further.

He travelled farther than he had intended.
He looked for further information on the forest walks. 

Lay vs. Lie
The trick here is to remember that lie is for reclining and lay is for setting something down. Once you have those straight, just follow the correct conjugations.

Lay
I lay the book on the table (Present)
I laid the book on the table (Past)
Laying the book on the table, I stand (Present Participle)
I have laid the book on the table (Past Participle)

Lie
I lie in the bed (Present)
I lay in the bed (Past)
Lying in bed, I fall asleep (Present Participle)
I have lain in bed for hours (Past Participle)