Punctuation: It’s not just for emoticons

Today is National Punctuation Day, on which we celebrate the useful tools around the edges of our keyboards. Some — such as , and . —  we use all the time so they are closest at hand and do not even require using “shift.” Some, such as ; , have enjoyed a renaissance through emoticons….

Happy National Punctuation Day!

Today, Sept. 24, is National Punctuation Day — admittedly, a created holiday, like National Donut Day, and, like National Donut Day, it’s a holiday that celebrates something worthy of celebration. (Yes, there are seven commas in that sentence. Plus a dash and an apostrophe, and the obligatory period.) Punctuation is like road signs for writing….

Don’t sweat it: Serial comma

Want to start an argument in a group of editors? Bring up the serial comma. The serial (also called Oxford) comma is the comma that comes right before the conjunction in a list of items. For some reason, word people tend to get really worked up about this one little mark. (There’s even a song…

What is an appositive, anyway?

Originally posted on Grammar Monkeys on Dec. 13, 2010. So we’ve done participles and gerunds, and because @glamAtude asked whether we could talk about appositives, here we go: An appositive is a word or phrase that follows a noun and gives more information about it. It can be a single noun: Her new puppy, Paperboy,…