Saturday, September 29, 2012

Know What Rhymes With Punctuation...


If you will direct your eyes to the side bar on the right (other right, goofball) you can read a little about me, like the part where it says I am a writer. This means that I write words that form sentences which morph into paragraphs, and the paragraphs miraculously come together into a little thing I call "a story."

The thing is a story (or anything worth reading, really) also requires punctuation, and that's where things come to a screaming halt - for me.

I spell real good, and I can make good sentences (like them two. See?), but punctuation has me a little beflustered. It's not like the glaringly mispelled word that jumps off the page, screaming for justice, and correction (though sometimes one or two get past my awesome scrutiny, which I'll only catch after I've published the post.)

I'm pretty good with periods because they go at the end of the sentence, but rarely anywhere else. Note I said "rarely" not "never."

I'm also pretty fluent in the placement of question marks. They always land at the end of a sentence, but never anywhere else, like say, the middle. I understand, and am pretty proficient in the usage of quotation marks, and my personal favorite the exclamation point. It's awesome!

But the guy I have a hard time with is the comma. He just seems to show up in the most random places, and I'm not always sure if it's the right places. Like, I use a comma here because...I'm not sure why, but I'm pretty sure one goes there. Also, commas precede buts, and ands, and sos. And sequences, but why? I always understood that a comma was used in those spots to show the sentence was changing direction. Doesn't the presence of the word "but" already indicate a change. What about "and?" Side note: would I place the question mark inside the quotation next to "and" or outside the quotation. It's not a sentence so...Someone help me out here.

I now return to the comma issue.

I remember that a comma is used when two parts of a sentence could be two seperate sentences. However, that is the extent of my recollection, and I used to be really great with grammar. I was a straight up A student. What happened?

I know what happened, but don't get me started.

Anyway, I am a writer, and grammar control is the editors job. If I knew what I was doing an editor would be out of work. I believe that as long as the manuscript I hand over isn't filled with complete grammatical destruction I'm doing pretty well, but I don't want to put the emPHAsis on the wrong syLLAble, so I give my baby off to Mr. D to pretty up. It gives him something to do.

For a long, long time.

Anyhoo, know what else rhymes with punctuation? Procrastination, but I'll write about that later.


1 comment:

Kari Clayton said...

I have a theory, and that theory is called...


They take all your brain cells while forming in your uterus. It's sad, but true.

But hey, at least your kids will be smart, right? Right?

Source: I know a lot of people who were smart before they had kids.