Edit This Grammar Lesson: Laying in Bed or Lying in Bed?
When you're tired and want to go to bed, do you wonder whether it's grammatically correct to say that you're laying in bed or lying in bed?
Of course not! You're tired and couldn't care less about grammar at this point!
Laying down ... lying down ... I'm in bed! Who cares?!
Well, we grammar nerds care! So if you don't mind keeping one eye open for a few seconds longer, I'd like to use this week's Edit This® grammar lesson to show you that you've probably been saying this line wrong your entire life.
Laying in bed or Lying in Bed: Which is it?
Let's get right to it: Lying in bed is correct in this instance. The same goes for if you were to say that you are going to lie in bed. This is because "lie" is an intransitive verb that means being in a flat position. "Lay" is a transitive verb that requires an object to act upon (putting something down) – a toy, a purse, a cellphone, a vase, or even a notebook.
Here are a few examples of lay, laying, and laid in a sentence:
* Jackson likes laying his toys on the counter.
* I laid my cellphone down on the couch.
* Leslie went to lay her coat down on the bed.
Here are a few examples of lie or lying in a sentence:
* I'm lying down for a few hours.
* If I lie down for too long, my ankle gets stiff.
* I like to lie down on the couch when watching TV.
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No one will give you too hard a time for confusing laying down in bed and lying down in bed when you're just talking aloud. But if you're using these phrases in written form, you will want to use them correctly. It's fun to tease friends on Facebook for grammar mistakes or point out errors in other written copy. But any spelling or grammar error in business writing – brochures, website copy, blog posts, press releases, newsletters, etc. – wreak havoc on your company's image.
Studies show that when choosing between two companies, customers prefer the one with clear and error-free written communication.
If you're interested in having Edit This handle your company's content writing and editing needs, give us a call today! We can write copy from scratch or spruce up what you've already written. When it comes to grammar, everyone could use an extra set of eyes.
STEVE GAMEL is the President & Owner of Edit This, a writing and editing services company located in Denton, TX, and the author of Write Like You Mean It: Mastering Your Passion For The Written Word. Steve handles anything involving the written word. Give him a call today to help give your business a clear voice.
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