JS Tip 481: Anyway, Anyways, and Any Way
From the Writing Workshops: Anyway, Anyways, and Any Way
Our friend Chris Dixon of Mountainland Technical College asked us to explore anyway, anyways, and any way.
Here we go—
Anyway means “nonetheless,” “nevertheless,” or “regardless.” You’ll often see it in a sentence with “but,” “although,” or “however”:
- Charlie thought it was a bad idea, but I filed the report anyway.
The app is expensive, although people use it anyway.
Anyway is perfectly acceptable in business or technical writing.
But ask yourself if it pays its dues. Does it add meaning to the sentence?
- Charlie thought it was a bad idea, but I filed the report.
The app is expensive, although people use it.
If there’s a difference, use it. If not, don’t use it. Your call.
Anyways (with an s) is slang. Nonstandard. Informal. Colloquial. On the same level as “ain’t.”
Avoid it in business or technical writing. Use it only in directly quoting someone speaking casually:
- Bob responded, “We’re gonna do it anyways.”
But this may be disparaging. It makes Bob sound uneducated. He may not be comfortable seeing his words in print. Use discretion. Be kind.
Any way—two words—means “in any manner” or “by any means”:
- We’ll encourage employees to stop smoking any way we can.
You can complete the job any way you’d like.
If you have questions about writing, let us know. Or leadership. Or customer service. Or nuclear weapons. (Well . . . maybe not nuclear weapons.)
We love this stuff.
And thank you, Chris Dixon.