Can you correct the error in the sentence below? Scroll to the bottom of today’s post for the answer.
My favorite blouse lost one of its’ buttons.
Here are more ideas about dealing with writer’s block, the bane of every writer.
1. Know your favorite excuses and escapes, and train yourself to resist them. (Mine is housework. It helps to be married to another writer who understands why you want to avoid the vacuum cleaner today.)
2. Go for a walk. I know, I know – wouldn’t it be better to stay at your desk and battle it out there? But here’s what those walks always do for me: Before I reach the end of my street, I’m ready to start writing again. There’s something about moving my feet and swinging my arms that gets the ideas flowing.
3. Use a warm-up activity (preferably one that doesn’t require fancy stuff, like punctuation and elaborate sentences). Here are some that work for me:
- List the “Journalist’s Questions” (Who? What? When? Where? Why?) on a piece of paper, and then use your topic to scribble answers to each question.
- Make a cluster (also called webbing and mind-mapping). You draw a circle in the middle of your paper and write your topic in it. Then draw connecting lines and circles as you think of related facts and ideas. This is fun to do and doesn’t require any fancy writing skills. Here’s a sample:
- Freewrite. Jot down anything that comes to mind. Some of my best writing has started out this way on table napkins in restaurants or little notepads in hotel rooms.
- Draw stick figures and get them talking.
Whatever you do, don’t start with the intention of writing something great. Make this your motto: “I can fix it later.” Put something – anything – on paper or onto your computer screen. Before you know it, your writer’s block will be gone!
Instant Quiz ANSWER
The correct word today is its:
My favorite blouse lost one of its buttons. CORRECT
If you came up with the right answer, congratulations! It’s and its have my nomination for the most commonly misspelled words in English.
Three things to remember:
- His doesn’t have an apostrophe, and neither do the words its, hers, yours, ours, and theirs.
- Its’ is always wrong – 100% of the time. Never put an apostrophe after its.
- When you write it’s, remember that the apostrophe is like a tiny “i”: it is. For example, “It’s going to rain today.”
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