Effect Is a Verb, Say What?

It’s true! Forget what your schoolteachers taught you, effect is a verb too. Granted, it is most commonly used as a noun, so I can–ahem, sort of–understand why teachers led us astray. However, our adult minds can handle the truth: effect is sometimes used as a verb to mean to bring about or to cause something to happen, as in the common phrase effect change.

Take a moment and let that sink in. Your subconscious was likely already aware of this fact, so hopefully it won’t take long for your heart rate to normalize.

Now, I’m really going to blow your mind. Affect can be used as a noun! This little tidbit might very well send your subconscious screaming, as it is a rare usage, and when it is used, it is most often seen in reference to psychology to mean, loosely, a manifestation of emotion.

Okay, so let’s look at an example of each. Since word usage is all about relationships, we’ll use a relationship scenario.

Casey loved Rachel with all his might and decided he didn’t want to live without her—ever. His planned marriage proposal was meant to effect [verb] a drastic change to their relationship. Would she say yes? He hoped his sincerity would affect [verb] her decision. He was determined to surprise her. On the big night, his nonchalant attitude and routine actions had the desired effect [noun] on her; Rachel was stunned, as was obvious by her affect [noun].

 

 

5 Tips for Children’s Writing

I walked into the children’s writing class on the first day of the semester feeling very smug. I had made the brilliant decision to take this class because the rest of my classes were going to be the most intense I’d yet taken in my college career and I needed something easy peasy to round out my schedule. I had never wanted to be a children’s writer. I wanted to be a real writer–you know, someone who had important new ideas and could pen them in such an inspiring way as to effect world change, not someone who spent her days trying to create rhyming pairs.

Children’s writer, and my professor for the class, Lisa Jahn-Clough set me straight. She taught me that children’s writing can be the most challenging and most rewarding type of writing. She helped me discover a passion I never knew I had. I owe her much, but I’ve not yet found a way to repay her. In the meantime, I am going to bestow upon you some of her wisdom. Following are five basics of children’s writing and publishing you absolutely must have down if you want to contribute to this art. Continue reading “5 Tips for Children’s Writing”