Tag Archives: comma

Grammar in the digital age

In advance of a teleseminar with the National Association of Memoir Writers tomorrow (Friday, September 16), I wrote a blog to get participants riled up! The full article can be read here:

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The death of the serial ki …

I mean, comma.

Once again, one of my Bend book lovers – Anita – alerted me to a grammar game-changer. The University of Oxford has killed a punctuation principle that has been a part of the English language since way before Peter, Paul, and Mary sang “Kumbaya,” since we waved the red, white, and blue, or talked about the good, the bad, and the ugly.

So … with the new rules, you can either be good, or bad and ugly.

Click here for the full article.

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Comma Kaze

Editing can be a thankless – and dull – job, but still, there are moments. If it weren’t for editors, writers might send messages they hadn’t intended. Read ’em and weep (or laugh!)

Look at that computer, genius.

Ladies, remember the rummage sale. It’s a chance to get rid of things not worth keeping around the house. Bring your husbands.

For those of you who have children and don’t know it, we have a nursery downstairs.

Eight new choir robes are needed because of the addition of several new members and the deterioration of some older ones.

Please place your donation in the envelope along with the deceased person you want remembered.

The ladies of the Church have cast off clothing of every kind. They may be seen in the basement on Friday afternoon.

Low Self-Esteem Group will meet Thursday at 6 p.m. Please use the back door.

Weight Watchers will meet at 7 p.m. at the community center. Please use the large double doors at the side entrance.

The Associate Minister unveiled the new campaign slogan last Sunday: “I upped my pledge; up yours.”

And for those who like a little “X-rated” …

Hey, Jack off that horse.

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Innie or Outie?

No, I’m not going to vent about belly buttons.

I’m talking about (and a reader asked about) properly placing punctuation (alliterations later!) at the end of a sentence when quotation marks are involved. Does the period go inside  or outside the quote marks? How about a question mark? A comma? An exclamation point?

The answer? All of the above. Let me explain.

ALL commas and periods are placed within the closing quotation mark. NO exceptions.

My philosophy is Live and let live.”

If I believe Live and let live,” do you?

Question marks and exclamation points can be in or out, depending upon the quote.

If the punctuation mark is not part of the actual quote, it is placed outside the closing quote mark.

Do you agree the best philosopy is Live and let live”?

I say to you all, Live and let live”!

But if the punctuation mark is integral to the quoted material, it is placed inside the closing quote mark:

Do you like the song, “Who Let the Dogs Out?”

I heard the guy yell, Fire!”

All other punctuation (semi-colon, colon, dash, etc.) are out. Always.

I say, To be or not to be”; that is the question.

I say, “To be or not to be” what do you say?

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