Affect vs Effect

Does Hemmingway’s writing affect you or does it effect you? Not sure? Let’s solve the problem once and for all.


The word affect is a verb. It is an action meaning to cause an emotional response or make a difference to the outcome of something. The word affect is something being done to you.

A movie affects you deeply if it makes you cry.
The weather affects you if it causes you to change your vacation plans. 


The word effect is a noun. As a noun, an effect is the change or consequence of an action. You can list effects.

The effect of the snow storm is that school is closed. 
The effects of the snow storm are closed schools, cold weather, and slippery roads.

Effect can also be a verb in some cases if it means to bring about change. You might join a protest to effect change in government. Effect as a verb is something that is being done by you.

This is a terrific example of why knowing grammar and the 8 parts of speech is so important. If you know the job of each word in a sentence, you will better be able to distinguish the best word choice! But that is a discussion for another day…

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