away vs a way :

away or a way

“Jessica commented on my haircut in a way that made me think maybe I shouldn’t have let my little sister do it for me.” In this sort of context, “a way” should always be two distinct words, though many people use the single word “away” instead. If you’re uncertain, try substituting another word for “way”: “in a manner that,” “in a style that.” If the result makes sense, you need the two-word phrase. Then you can tell Jessica to just go away.

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  • s  not present; having left
    he's away right now
    you must not allow a stranger into the house when your mother is away
  • a  used of an opponent's ground
    an away game
  • s  (of a baseball pitch) on the far side of home plate from the batter
    the pitch was away (or wide)
  • r  from a particular thing or place or position (`forth' is obsolete)
    ran away from the lion
    wanted to get away from there
    sent the children away to boarding school
    the teacher waved the children away from the dead animal
  • r  from one's possession
    gave away the tickets
  • r  out of the way (especially away from one's thoughts)
    pushed all doubts away
  • r  out of existence
    the music faded away
    tried to explain away the affair of the letter"- H.E.Scudder
    idled the hours away
    her fingernails were worn away
  • r  at a distance in space or time
    the boat was 5 miles off (or away)
    the party is still 2 weeks off (or away)
    away back in the 18th century
  • r  indicating continuing action; continuously or steadily
    he worked away at the project for more than a year
    the child kept hammering away as if his life depended on it
  • r  so as to be removed or gotten rid of
    cleared the mess away
    the rotted wood had to be cut away
  • r  freely or at will
    fire away!
  • r  in or into a proper place (especially for storage or safekeeping)
    put the toys away
    her jewels are locked away in a safe
    filed the letter away
  • r  in a different direction
    turn away one's face
    glanced away
  • r  in reserve; not for immediate use
    has a nest egg tucked away for a rainy day
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