Sunday, May 16, 2010

Anyway...

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As you can tell from my last post, I'm cocooned in the editing process.


It's challenging and takes a serious amount of brain power, but I don't let myself forget for one second that I begged the universe for nine long years to be in this moment. It is a blessing.


So, today you'll have to suffer through another editorial related post.

It's a simple one...
do you use "anyway" or "anyways" in your work?

anyway
means anyhow or in any case


anyways
is a colloquial expression and, while fine to use in conversation or on a chatty forum like our blogs, should probably not be used in our manuscripts.

This is different from the words toward and towards

with this duo, there is no specific right or wrong. Americans tend to use toward and our British neighbors often prefer towards. Whichever you choose to use in your work, just be consistent throughout.

Boring post today ... technical stuff, I know and I'm sorry. But, this is where my brain is right now.

Question: which do you use...anyway/anyways and toward/towards? have you ever thought about this before? are you doing something more exciting over there in your corner of the world? tell me, I'd love to know and do a little vicarious living :D
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41 comments:

Pen said...

I tend not to use anyway/anyways cause I write fantasy. But I'd probably use 'anyway' if I did.

I use toward ... I think. Heck. Hhmmm. Maybe I need to check. :D

Stephanie McGee said...

I think I'd contest the "never use anyways in a manuscript" thing. Maybe not in the narrative flow, but in dialogue, sure. People don't talk in stiff, formal ways. They use colloquialisms and adages and cliches. If it fits for a character and it works for the moment, there's no rule against anything. (That's just my opinion.) If you've crafted your characters carefully and know what would fit with how they perceive things, how they would speak, etc., then there's no reason you can't use an occasional colloquialism or idiom in dialogue. (Or in the narrative if writing in first person.)

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

I'm revising, so, yes, I am contemplating lots of words. It's amazing how many times I check the dictionary and thesaurus to be sure I have the right nuance. Or try to remember if I should use further or farther. Isn't it amazing how many words humans have created?

PJ Hoover said...

I'm an anyway person. I looked up the toward(s) thing a while back and was glad to see there was no right answer.

Milton said...

Muttie prefers anyways in dialogue. She tends to use it a lot in her blog as it's 'friendlier'. However, Paw is an English teacher and is always giving her a row for using it and the proper work is 'anyway' he says. So there. Use 'anyways' and you'll annoy all the English teachers out there!

Milt x

Tabitha Bird said...

Anyway... I am traveling to the USA for a conference soon. I am excited :)

And I weed anyway out of a lot of my writing. I tend to over use it.

Robyn Campbell said...

Hey Tess, ol' pal -o- mine! How are you? I see the editing you are doing is blessing us. Because we get to change things now, before querying. YAY

And I had used anyways, because MG girls tend to talk like that. But I was told recently by an editor not to rely on those things so much. But to depend on creating a real world. With distinct phrases and narrative clues. I was dropping a -g- here and there. Not good. Dani, first put me onto that. Live and learn. =)

I have missed our visits, my sweet blogging bud. ^_^

Wendy Paine Miller said...

Anyway.

I have a weird thing about toward(s) and some other words like it. When I was little (up to age 6) I grew up in England and Germany. I'm sure I was influenced how to read with some of these words b/c I always have to fight to write toward instead of towards...

Anyhoo. ;) Have a sunny Monday.
~ Wendy

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

My husband's family (sometimes him too) use anyways...they are from the south and it sounds natural coming from them. It's a cultural thing...

I use towards, but I'm English...I had no idea it wasn't how everyone said it???? I'm moving towards the couch for my morning nap. :)

Have fun with your edits...

Tina Laurel Lee said...

Thanks for the toward and towards! I just assumed I was wrong always wanting to use the word towards and really the correct way is toward. It's nice to have that cleared up!

Janice said...

Anyway and usually toward but occasionally towards.

End of the school year type of stuff. Busy but nothing crazy different.

Lady Glamis said...

I don't think this post is boring at all. I always get confused about the toward/s thing, but I try to never use anyway in my manuscript unless it's in dialogue, and even then, sparingly.

I usually get rid of this stuff in the editing phase.

Michelle said...

I use both "anyway" and "toward." I was under the impression that adding the "s" was incorrect, although I've read plenty of other people's work where they say "towards." Thanks for the information!

Tess said...

So very happy to see I didn't bore you all out of your minds .. thanks for coming by, I am actually quite enjoying this thread.

Martin Willoughby said...

I use anyway in speech, but nowhere else. Being British, I use towards, which we all know is always correct. :-)

Amy Saia said...

I use anyway and toward. I once read that an editor will always strike out towards (unless it's a Brit!).

Davin Malasarn said...

I always use anyway, but I switch between toward and towards depending on my mood. Ah, illogic. :P

Susan Fields said...

I don't think this is boring at all - this is really good stuff! I didn't know I need to keep anyways out of my writing. I'm not sure if I use it or not, I'll have to keep an eye out for it. I think I use towards, not toward. Again, I'll have to keep an eye out and be consistent. Thanks for the great tips!

Cindy said...

I like this post--I learned something and that's always good :)

I hardly ever use anyway but if I do, it's never anyways. And I always use toward. For some reason towards sounds funny to me.

Jen said...

I've never thought about it but I am thinking I would do anyways and towards. I tried to use it in a sentence but I think I cheated myself because I thought too much about it!!!

Solvang Sherrie said...

I skip the "s" on both words. At least I think I do...

Cynthia Chapman Willis said...

This is interesting and fun! I've always used "anyway," but toward versus towards has made me pause and question myself more than once in the past. I think I usually end up with "toward," though.

Hang in there with this stage of the process, Tess! It can be stressful and exhausting, but just keep thinking about how wonderful it will be to hold your book in your hands! Yea!!!

Kristen Torres-Toro said...

I use "anyway". And "toward". But that last one has always confused me... I always stop and reread the sentence several times before I move on.

paulgreci said...

I use "anyway" and usually use "toward" but not always. Like Kristen, I re-read the sentence, and listen to how it sounds.

Good luck with the edits!

WindyA said...

I love how you always get me thinking! I don't think I've ever used anyways in my mss. Maybe in casual emails with friends and what not, but that's it.

As for toward vs towards, I do the read aloud test. If it sounds weird, I change it.

Paige said...

I don't think anyways is even a word.

And you don't even want to know what we're doing in my corner of the world. It would just make you tired, and you need to keep your mind alert and work on that editing. When you emerge, though, I'd love to get together and play!

Jackee said...

Man, thanks for sharing! I always get confused about towards and toward and thought it had to do with subject plural/singular effects. Good to know, Tess! And good luck with revisions! (Can't wait until I have the book in my hands.)

Mary Aalgaard said...

I'm not sure which I use more often of either of these choices, but from now on, going forward, or is it forwards, I'll be aware of my word choice, or choices.

I'm not doing much writing, but I am gearing up for a bike tour in June, 35 miles in one day.

Sarah Skilton said...

Hadn't really thought about it till now, but I use both without the "s."

Today I'm all procrastination-McGee, so nothing much exciting going on.

Congrats on toughing out this crazy process for nine years. It's inspiring to hear that it's paying off!

lotusgirl said...

I use "anyway" and I used to use "towards" maybe it's a southern thing, but I've switched to "toward" because I heard that agents like it better.

On the towards thing, I wonder if it's southern because the south has so many British influences compared to the rest of the country. Hmm. Something to think about. I didn't realize that towards was a British preference.

Linda Kage said...

I must be afriad of Ss. I usually say toward and anyway.

Jill Kemerer said...

The only time I'll throw in an "anyway" is if it's in conversation, and usually I avoid it. I don't use "towards" because it's the Old English version of the word. I use "toward."

Have a wonderful weekend!

Jennifer Shirk said...

I use "anyway" and "toward". But in my blog posts, I use "anyhew..." LOL!

ali said...

It's funny, I always edit people's ms's to say toward because I "think" the "s" on the end is wrong. So thanks for straightening me out! Editing over here too, so the post wasn't boring to me! ♥

B.J. Anderson said...

I love to talk editing! Not boring at all. And I use anyway/toward.

Theresa Milstein said...

Anyway and towards. I just read through someone's manuscript with lots of anyways. I cut off each "s". In New York, we all said "anyway", so I've been surprised about how many non-New Yorkers use it.

dellgirl said...

Not boring in the least, it's very interesting. I use anyway/toward and, had the tendency to cringe whenever I see/saw "s" added to either. Stephanie clarified that for me. Thanks for another great post.

I’m ducking in to say hello. Have a great “rest-of-the-week”!!

Amy Holder said...

Interesting post! I always use "anyway"... but I tended to use "towards" instead of "toward" until my copyeditor requested that I use "toward". After my copyedits, I seem to question the way I pronounce and write things a lot more than I ever did before. I think I have editing paranoia now. :)

Good luck with the rest of your edits!

Tabitha Bird said...

How goes the editing? :) Hope it is going well.

jdcoughlin said...

I love towards. My editor said I use both, and I said, yeah, two different people talking. And he said, no, there's not. And I said, Oh. Damn.
But I love towards. Toward sounds so formal. So not my characters. Towards, sounds like, over there, somewhere, stumble along and you'll find it, eventually. I'd help you, but I might spill my beer.

Anita said...

Anyway. Unless it's dialogue, and then it depends. I shift back and forth between towards and toward...no reason for it. And nothing terribly exciting happening here...just chillin as a family. Have a great weekend!