Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"

What’s the difference between “interested” and “interesting” in English?

Today, in #10 of our countdown of the Top 15 Fixes in English series, we’ll be discussing when to use the -ed and -ing endings! 

To be interested is not the same as being interesting.  The same applies to other English phrases such as bored and boring, or excited and exciting.  Here is a general rule to help you remember the difference:

  • When talking about yourself or your feelings, use the –ed ending.  “I am interested in music.”
  • When talking about others or something outside yourself, use the –ing ending.  “That music is interesting.”


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Here are some more examples:

  • “She’s excited by travel.”
  • “Travel is exciting.”
  • “They’re bored by soccer.”
  • “Soccer is boring.”



In this roleplay, Lindsay and Michelle are discussing their hobbies.

Michelle: So Lindsay, I know you are a very interesting person. What do you like to do in your free time?

Lindsay: I love playing tennis, hiking, camping and just being outdoors. I’m also very interested in psychology and I love to read!

Michelle: What is a hobby that you find very boring?

Lindsay: I’m not very interested in sewing or crocheting. I would be bored doing anything like that.

Michelle: What is something exciting that you’d like to do someday?

Lindsay: Maybe cliff jumping. I get excited and nervous just thinking about it, but I think I’d be up for it.


Other Entries in the 15 Fixes Series:


What do you find interesting, boring or amazing?

What isn’t interesting, boring or amazing?

Tell us in the comments section below!

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