Runsinshadows

Confused

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Hoping someone here can clear something up for me. When I was in grade school, I was taught that you showed posession by adding a 's at the end of of a name. However, I keep seeing where it as s' as in Ross'. Occasionally, I will still see it written as Ross's. I tried looking into it as I know things are being taught differently in school, but the grammar sites don't agree on which it is. I am now so confused on which is correct. Does anyone here know which is the one I should be using?

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So here’s the very complicated deal:

Technically, if you would actually pronounce the possessive s as a separate syllable (as you would if you were talking about the Ross family’s house), you should use an ‘s even if the name ends in s. So you would write, “I am going to the Ross’s house.”

However, in RL, very few people do it that way. They will instead write “I am going to the Ross’ house.” 

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I’ve always gone with the convention of adding the possessive ‘s for a family name, like the Ross’s house, but not for an individual’s name, like Gus’ friend

(And this is why my editors want to kill me...)

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It looks like I am not the only one confused by this. One site that I checked, stated that either way was correct, you just needed to be consistent in your useage. So far, that one seems to be the most senisble, as it is something I have noticed being done.

I have been known to completely reword a sentence to avoid the issue, but that isn't always possible, especially when you are referring to a person directly. 

Thanks for the input. If nothing else, I no longer feel as if I am stupid for not knowing which way is correct. 

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4 hours ago, Strange_idea said:

Actually, I know we show which tackled specifically that.  Ross's game dungeon. He had very good citations. Long story short, I believe he is correct

I am sorry, I don't understand. By "we", do you mean this site? I have never heard of Ross's game dungeon, so I have no idea what citations you are talking about. 

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I think the long and short of it is which grammar style book you use. AP says use just the apostrophe after a proper noun ending in “s” while Chicago Manual of Style says it’s an apostrophe plus s. Grammarly has a good discussion of it.

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4 minutes ago, BronxWench said:

I think the long and short of it is which grammar style book you use. AP says use just the apostrophe after a proper noun ending in “s” while Chicago Manual of Style says it’s an apostrophe plus s. Grammarly has a good discussion of it.

Thank you. I will check it out. :)

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It's like that joke about spherical cows in a vaccume.

No, the conditions of life are constantly shifting, particularly in language. Since language is about standardised communication, the rules are constantly shifting as people change them without realising. But by the same logic,  they must remain uniform. This is why study of language can be a full time job and recognised branch of science. So yeah, it's both what people use and what they are supposed to use. 

 

Everyone gets taught the same things because they exist to be a common starting point and enable communication. variations are inevitable but the standard must exist. Where you go from there is up to you. So long as it's coherent, and legible, it will be fine. And thats what proofreaders are for, headache absorbers

 

Besides. Mess ups can add character

Edited by Strange_idea

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I have decided to just stick to what I have been doing. While I love writing, it is something I do for my own entertainment. After thinking about it, I realized I don't need to be perfect about it. While I want readers to enjoy what I write, once I get something posted, what is more important to me is if I am happy with it. By that, I mean did I get the story out of my head in a way that I can look back and say I enjoyed writing that story.

I am my own proofreader. Maybe that is why I worry so much about things like punctuation. Just because I am writing for myself doesn't mean I don't care what others think. I would be mortified to learn someone had the thoughts about something I worked hard at writing, that I have had after reading some stories. My thoughts have been far from nice, so many times.

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