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Thanks, now explain the explination.

  1. Oct 16, 2006 #1
    I write short stories every once in a while and I ran into the affect/effect problem. I don't know which one to use, but the notebook i'm using to write in has some grammar rules on the back cover. Here is what it says:
    to "affect" is to influence, to "effect" is to cause
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 16, 2006 #2
    I'm a harsh critic of my own writing but i recently wrote two sentences that are awesome. the rest of the story wasn't that good, but I'm so in love with the last two lines I have to share them:
    "I love you," I said. "Please don't ever leave me."
    She said, "Sorry," and went home to her husband.

    Now that's good writing. The story I'm working on right now is about a guy watching a telethon for people with tourette's syndrome, but the people manning the phone lines are sufferers. When he tries to make a donation he just ends up in a fight with the operator.
  4. Oct 16, 2006 #3
    Well the way I see it is that you/someone/something affects something
    but something causes the effect of something. It really depends on what you are saying
  5. Oct 16, 2006 #4
    affect is a verb.....affect is synonymous with influence.

    effect is a noun. It is what results from some action or cause....

    one is a verb...the other is a noun...that should clear it up.
  6. Oct 16, 2006 #5
    Quite wrong. "To effect" is a verb as well.
  7. Oct 16, 2006 #6
  8. Oct 17, 2006 #7
    Can you really say "To effect"?... really?:confused:
  9. Oct 17, 2006 #8
    so do I say the mosquito affected me with malaria or effected me with malaria? and it gave me a bad ear affection/effection

    lol, just kidding. wouldn't that be funny though
  10. Oct 17, 2006 #9
    Did the mosquito influence you or did it cause you?
  11. Oct 17, 2006 #10


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    Yes you can. (When you see 'effect' as a transitive verb, think along the lines of 'accomplish').
    Eg: to effect the disarmament; to effect its conclusion.
  12. Oct 17, 2006 #11


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    Yes it is.
    Cut the rest of the story.
    Not all stories need to be long, in particular the short ones.
  13. Oct 17, 2006 #12
    are you absolutely sure the short ones don't need to be long?
  14. Oct 17, 2006 #13


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    You'd say the mosquito infected you with malaria. :biggrin: :devil:

    An effect is a result. So, a cause leads to an effect.

    To affect something is to influence the cause (more or less). You can affect something that leads to an effect.

    But, effect can also be a verb, and means to cause something to happen. You can effect an effect. :biggrin: I haven't run into the verb "to effect" in anything other than technical writing. I don't think people use it in normal conversation.
  15. Oct 17, 2006 #14


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    Hey, Moonbear! Is it really possible to effect an effect? :wink:
  16. Oct 19, 2006 #15
    so you're saying the verb usage of effect is the same thing as the verb usage of affect?

    If I am referring to the act of making something happen or the act of making some change, I use the verb affect. If I am referring to the result of some cause, I use the noun effect. I never use effect as a verb, even in scientific papers.
  17. Oct 20, 2006 #16


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    Nope. Changing something (affecting it) is not the same as causing something to happen (effecting it). Can be quite the opposite sometimes.

    Example: "He effected the transition" vs "he affected the transition".
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2006
  18. Oct 20, 2006 #17
    ah, that clarifies. Thanks.
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