Here are some very simple words that are also very easy to get confused with one another. It’s often difficult to spot these errors when you are editing, as all of these words are so small and similar. We’ll start with the easiest word: two (and in the number 2). That spelling should be the easiest for you to remember when you’re writing. The other two (too and to, that is) get confused more often, especially by new writers. They mean very different things and if you do not get them the right way around, it can confuse your readers. Let’s take a look.
This can mean the same as ‘also’. For example: Mary has an ice cream. John has one, too. It can also mean ‘extra’. Use too when there is an increase in something, for example an increase in size (too large), temperature (too hot) or speed (too fast). This usage emphasizes the word (large, hot and fast) For example: Mary’s feet were too large for her shoes. John’s music was too loud and it woke his parents.
This is a preposition. In this case, to always precedes a noun. Use it when expressing a direction, place or position. For example: Mary went to Italy. John went to Blackpool. It can also be used with the infinitive form of verbs. An infinitive verb is the basic version of the verb (how it appears in the dictionary). Infinitives can be complicated. Here are some simple examples: Mary needs to study. John wants to help.
There are many websites dedicated to explaining the differences between too and to where you can learn more about infinitives and read other examples. Remembering when to use each of these words will improve your grammar and your writing.
Written by: Laura Clark
* Laura is a 23 year old English woman with a history degree residing in the UK. She has been writing for many years and enjoys writing horror/fantasy stories, as well as poetry. You can view her work at: https://inspiredstoriesandpoems.wordpress.com/
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Categories: Writing Tips