General Writing and Grammar Help/BE wrong, GO wrong

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Question
Dear Ted:

Is there a difference between "to BE wrong" and "to GO wrong"?

If so, when should I use each of them?

Would you please give me some examples?

Many, many thanks for your kind help.

Paolo

Answer
Dear Paolo:

Is there a difference between "to BE wrong" and "to GO wrong"?

If so, when should I use each of them?

*** BE -- a state of being; no action required

*** GO -- an action verb; something has to be done incorrectly

EXAMPLES:

No matter what side of an argument she takes, she IS usually wrong.

If my answers ARE wrong, I will fail the test.

The conductor lost his place in the musical score, and everything WENT wrong after that.

I don't want to GO the wrong way, so I printed out a page of directions and a map.

*** In short . . .

No action = BE
Action required = GO

Ted

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Ted Nesbitt

Expertise

I am the bibliographic instruction and reference librarian at a public college. Some members of the English department recommend me to their students. I offer assistance in grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and paragraph development. My master`s thesis concerns William Faulkner`s tragic novels. I formerly taught advanced placement English at two schools in the Philadelphia area.

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I have been one of the highest-ranked volunteers in this category for more than a decade.

Education/Credentials
B. A. and M. A in English; MSIS in Library & Information Sciences; graduate study in philosophy

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