Skip to main content

Raise vs. Rise

Way too often do we see folks misuse these two words. Here's a simple explanation of the difference between raise and rise—and when to use each.

Q: Do raise and rise mean the same thing, or is there a difference? —Anonymous

Raise vs. Rise

A: It's hard to believe, but the answer to both of the questions posed is yes. Both words technically mean the same thing (to move upwards), but there is a difference in how you should use each one.

(Click here to view our 12 most popular grammar posts.)

Rise is intransitive verb and does not take an object. What this means is that you use the verb rise when something moves upwards by itself.

The sun rises every morning.
I rise out of bed quickly when the smell of freshly cooked bacon is in the air.

In these examples, the subjects ("the sun" and "I") move upward on their own, without the physical help of an outside force (though the smell of bacon certainly helps in its own way).

Raise, on the other hand, is a transitive verb that requires that the subject act upon an object. In other words, something raises something else.

The Boy Scouts raised money to offset the cost of their next camping trip.
I raised my hand in the meeting to ask, "Why isn't there any bacon here?"

In the first sentence, the Boy scouts (subject) raised money (object). In the second, I (subject) raised my hand (object).

When constructing your sentence, just look to see if the subject rises on its own or if it's raising something else. This will help you determine which verb to use.

Grammar and Mechanics

No matter what type of writing you do, mastering the fundamentals of grammar and mechanics is an important first step to having a successful writing career.

Click to continue.

Ben Acker: On Writing Scary Stories for Middle-Grade Readers

Ben Acker: On Writing Scary Stories for Middle-Grade Readers

Ben Acker discusses the joy of reading scary stories growing up that led him to write his new middle-grade horror collection, Stories to Keep You Alive Despite Vampires.

How Freelance Writers Are Using TikTok to Find Success

How Freelance Writers Are Using TikTok to Find Success

TikTok is one of the hotter social media platforms, but it's more than just BookTok. Author C. Hope Clark shares how freelance writers are using TikTok to find success.

Shanterra McBride and Rosalind Wiseman: On Trusting Each Other in the Co-Writing Process

Shanterra McBride and Rosalind Wiseman: On Trusting Each Other in the Co-Writing Process

Authors Shanterra McBride and Rosalind Wiseman discuss the experience of going from friends to writing partner with their new nonfiction book, Courageous Discomfort.

Poetry Prompt

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 628

Every Wednesday, Robert Lee Brewer shares a prompt and an example poem to get things started on the Poetic Asides blog. This week, write a reflection poem.

Writer’s Digest Official Book Club Selection: The Weight of Blood

Writer’s Digest Official Book Club Selection: The Weight of Blood

The editors of Writer’s Digest are proud to announce the next book club selection, The Weight of Blood, by New York Times bestselling author Tiffany D. Jackson.

5 Tips for Writing a Medical Thriller

5 Tips for Writing a Medical Thriller

There are endless opportunities to build tension in medical thrillers. Here, Dr. Cristina LePort 5 tips for writing a medical thriller from the medical jargon to tying up loose ends.

Good Samaritan or Bystander?

Good Samaritan or Simply Bystander?

Every writer needs a little inspiration once in a while. For today's prompt, your character witnesses something bad happening—will they intervene?

Lygia Day Peñaflor: On Writing Unconventional Villains

Lygia Day Peñaflor: On Writing Unconventional Villains

Author Lygia Day Peñaflor discusses the high school experience that inspired her new YA psychological drama, Creep: A Love Story.

Writing Doesn't Have to Be Lonely: 5 Benefits of Joining a Writing Organization

Writing Doesn't Have to Be Lonely: 5 Benefits of Joining a Writing Organization

Author and Sisters in Crime Vice President Jennifer J. Chow reflects on 35 years of the women's crime writer's organization and the five benefits of joining a writing organization—even if you're an introvert.