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I'd like to describe an action which I'm used to do but I won't do it in the future. Which word is correct, for example:

Just a little more work, I'll never need that tool again.

Or:

Just a little more work, I'll never need that tool anymore.

If there is any better way to describe it, please help me to correct my sentence, too.

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Regardless of the choice between again and anymore, there is the issue that the whole sentence is awkward, perhaps verging on incorrect. It seems to me that what you're trying to say would sound better with the comma replaced by and: "Just a little more work and I'll never need that tool again." Depending on your actual meaning, you might instead insert after or with at the beginning: "With just a little more work, I'll never need that tool again." –  John Y Jun 17 '13 at 19:55

3 Answers 3

up vote 6 down vote accepted

There is some confusion among learners on how to use: again and anymore but specifically more so with: anymore. Perhaps the first being its orthography, anymore can also be written formally as: any more. Only recently has the one word version gained acceptance. Secondly, in some parts of the US it is found in positive sentences such as :"Anymore we watch videos rather than go to the movies." However, (I believe) it is very uncommon in the UK and the majority of grammar books would advise against using this construction.

Meanings

Anymore means the same as any longer and nowadays. These first two expressions are interchangeable, and the meaning will remain the same.

  • "She's always out with her boyfriend, she hardly meets her old friends any longer/nowadays."
  • "She's always out with her boyfriend, she hardly meets her old friends anymore."

  • "Just a little more work, I won't need that tool any longer"

  • "Just a little more work, I won't need that tool anymore."

However, due to the repetition of the word "more", the last sentence sounds clumsy and awkward. Choosing any longer will avoid this minor inaesthetic construction.

Note: I removed the negative meaning adverb, never, in order to make the sentences flow more naturally.

again = once more, another time.

  • "Just a little more work"

is grammatically correct and acceptable in writing but sounds slightly stiff in the context of everyday speech. If your aim is to sound more natural try: "a little bit" (a very common colloquial expression).

  • "never need that tool again"

is a very strong statement allowing no leeway; however, speakers sometimes interject ever before again to add a touch of humour and/or extra emphasis.

  • Just a little bit more work, then I'll never need that tool ever again.

    If I were the speaker and I had been using a tool for a certain length of time I might consider superfluous the word, work, and instead say something similar to:

Just a little bit more, then I'll never use that tool again.

or

I just need to use that tool for a little bit more, then I won't be needing it again.

or (with work)

Just a little bit more work and then I won't need it any longer

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Any( )more is a Negative Polarity Item and has its own idiomatic syntax within the NPI system. Its meaning is complex and involves presuppositions and change of state, and it can only occur in a negative environment. –  John Lawler Jun 17 '13 at 13:35
    
+1 Very detailed & helpful answer. As a Brit, I've never heard of the 'positive' usage of 'anymore'. –  TrevorD Jun 17 '13 at 15:36
    
Yeah, I forgot about positive anymore. It's a rare example of generalization; from a strictly negative-polarity [+p =ᵗ=> -p] it's now gone to a fully commutative [±p =ᵗ=> ∓p]. –  John Lawler Jun 17 '13 at 16:54
    
@TrevorD: Even in those parts of the U.S. that the positive anymore is used at all, I don't think it's particularly common. (It's uncommon enough that I can't even identify which parts of the U.S. use it. I've never heard it in my life, and I've been all over the country.) –  John Y Jun 17 '13 at 20:05
    
@PeterShor on the wiki link it states "with a meaning similar to nowadays or from now on". –  Mari-Lou A Apr 7 at 23:39

In this sentence, use again. If you'd like to use anymore, say, "I will not need that tool anymore."

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This assumes the " 'anymore' is a valid word" stance. There is a debate on this issue eloquently set out at alt-usage-english.org/anymore.html . –  Edwin Ashworth Jun 17 '13 at 7:02
    
But assuming you DO fall in the camp that suggest that anymore means "nowadays" or "any longer", then it is correct –  mplungjan Jun 17 '13 at 9:05
    
But assuming you DON'T ... –  Edwin Ashworth Jun 17 '13 at 10:20

It doesn't seem right to use anymore in that way

So if you have a sentence like this

Just a little more work, I'll never need that tool again.

If you want to use anymore instead of again I would recommend replacing I'll never with I won't

Just a little more work, I won't need that tool anymore.

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