(-) not verbing
We use the gerund (verb + ing)
- After prepositions and phrasal verbs
- As the subject of the sentence
- After some verbs:
admit, avoid, deny, dislike, enjoy, feel like, finish, hate, keep, like, love, mind, miss, practice, prefer, recommend, spend time/money, stop, suggest, give up, go on, etc.
The infinitive (to + base form)
(+) to + verb
(-) not to + verb
We use the infinitive
- After adjectives
- To express a reason or purpose
- after some verbs:
(can’t) afford, agree, decide, expect, forget, help, hope, learn, need, offer, plan, pretend, promise, refuse, remember, seem, try, want, would like, etc.
More verbs take the infinitive than the gerund.
The base form
We use the base form
- after most modal verbs and auxiliary verbs
- After make and let