I searched each of these "you lack of idea", "you lack idea", "you are lack of idea" & they all come out some results so there must be someone is using them.

But, I do not know which expression is correct!

or are they all correct?

  • Souldn't it be ideas? I'd say "You are lacking ideas" or "You lack ideas". But I think you can't say "of idea" – loli Aug 4 '15 at 16:52
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    None of them are correct. Lack is a transitive verb, not an adjective, so (3) is out. And it doesn't take a preposition before its object, so (1) is out. But idea is a count noun and requires either pluralization or an article, so all three are ungrammatical anyway. If the article were corrected in (2), it would be grammatical. – John Lawler Aug 4 '15 at 16:53
  • @JohnLawler I'd vote that answer up. – DJClayworth Aug 4 '15 at 16:56
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    So many people (over 10,000 hits for "you lack of idea") are indeed using it incorrectly. I doubt many of them are native English people though. – Avon Aug 4 '15 at 17:05
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    The first results page says 10,000+ but when I page through them, there are in fact only 28. – Tᴚoɯɐuo Aug 4 '15 at 17:11

None of them are correct. Lack can be two things:


In its verb form, it is a transitive verb. This means that is takes an object, you lack something. Using it as a verb in your examples, you could say:

  • You lack an idea.
  • You lack ideas.


As a noun lack means something that you do not have or do not have enough of. You can have a lack of something. Rephrasing your examples, you could say:

  • You have a lack of ideas.
  • You have a lack of an idea.

Note that saying that you are a lack does not make any sense. Someone has a lack of something. However, something can be a lack of something:

His problem is a lack of confidence.

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