Definitely to be;
Or not to definitely be;
That is the unquestionable.
The other day I was watching a movie which mentioned splitting the infinitive as a very, very naughty thing for a writer to intentionally or unintentionally do. I thought back – and tried to honestly remember learning about split infinitives in school. I couldn’t. (No kidding!)
I took it upon myself to casually peruse the internet for a refresher course. Here’s what I learned:
Write whatever and however you want!
Oh yeah, and here’s what a split infinitive is:
Placing an adverb between “to” and a verb. (The favorite example is “to boldly go . . . .”)
Then after more research, I learned:
The rule against split infinitives is bogus. See rule A. Write whatever and however you want!
I am one of those odd people who like to strictly follow grammar rules. I’m not saying I do it well; I’m just saying I like to precisely follow the rules. So, when I learned that I went around willy-nilly breaking this one for years, I was so embarrassed.
I want to sincerely write well. I want to write well sincerely. I want sincerely to write well.
But then I got over it (the embarrassment part, not the wanting to write well part) because most grammarians agree that the split infinitive is a perfectly acceptable use of an adverb. I am free to merrily split away. Phew! (Good thing since there are no less than eight split infinitives in this post alone.)
Then again, there’s a large group of distinguished writers who don’t like adverbs at all . . . . But we’ll save that topic for another day. Until then, I’m gonna make like an infinitive.
– Anita, Noted in Nashville
What do you think? Do you use split infinitives in your writing?