Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Homophone Troubles

I'm being plagued by words. Specific words. "Know" and "now" are among them. Which, it occurs to me, aren't homophones. Or even homonyms. So I may have just invalidated my entire point right from the get-go. Or not, because the other words giving me fits lately are, in fact, homophones.

As opposed to homonyms, which if I recall correctly are the ones that are spelled the same but sound different, so even if you got them confused it wouldn't make any difference in your writing. Might make a difference if you switch them up while talking, but I don't know anyone who's ever done that. Confusing homophones is a different matter. There are whole sections of grammar books dedicated to this issue.

My current nemesis is "your" and "you're." I don't know why. I know the difference. Heck, I know the difference between "who" and "whom" and can even use them correctly. Which these days is saying an awful lot. Yet somehow, when the words are flying and the fingers are typing, inevitably the wrong one comes out. I catch it, most of the time.

As mentioned in the opening, "know" and "now" are also currently vexing me. I know which one I want in my head, but somewhere between my frontal lobe and my fingers, the signals get crossed. Again, most of the time I catch it but not always. Depends on what else I am doing while I type.

And of course the spellchecker is no help. I have no idea if the grammar checker would catch it, but as I turn that off on every single word processing software I own, it's also of no help. So I just have to pay attention, and hope that my current dilemma goes away on it's own. It should, as it has happened before, but it's just a question of how long it will take.

In the meantime, maybe someone will come up with a pill for it. The side effects would, if all those commercials I see are any indication, likely kill me, but hey, that would solve the problem.

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