Comma Splices and Fused Sentences Comma Splices and Fused Sentences
Know how to identify these two major problems. A comma splice looks like this: Main clause main clause. Main clause main clause. +,+ A fused sentence looks like this: + Ø+
Recognize a main clause when you see one: subject + verb = complete thought. Recognize a main clause when you see one: subject subject + verb verb = complete thought.
In an important piece of writing, both of these sentence errors = In an important piece of writing, both of these sentence errors = D E A T H ! ! !
Read this sample sentence: Grandma still rides her Harley motorcycle her toy poodle balances in a basket between the handlebars. Adding a comma won’t help, sweetheart. It will just make a comma splice, an equally terrible error. Adding a comma won’t help, sweetheart. It will just make a comma splice, splice, an equally terrible terrible error. The error is here!
Come on, Princess, let’s take a ride to the solutions! Come on, Princess, let’s take a ride ride to the solutions!
Option 1: Fix the error with a period and a capital letter. Grandma still rides her Harley motorcycle her toy poodle balances in a basket between the handlebars. motorcycle. Her
Let’s fix the errors that follow! Use a period and a capital letter. Let’s fix the errors that follow! Use a period and a capital letter.
1.While Oreo gnawed the corner of a shoe, Skeeter shredded a roll of toilet paper, the dogs love when we have forgotten to close the master bedroom door. roll of toilet paper. The dogs
2.A bucket catches water under the leaky ceiling, Annette wishes she had trimmed the big oak tree before the rotten limb crashed through the roof. the leaky ceiling. Annette
3.Freddie’s car is a mess, she has overdue library books piled on the front seat, and she uses the floor as a trashcan for her frequent lunches at fast food restaurants. Freddie’s car is a mess. She
4.On a busy Saturday night, Andre sweated in the hot restaurant kitchen as he assembled pizzas, he dreamed of one day having his own cooking show on the Food Network. assembled pizzas. He
Option 2: Fix the error with a comma and a coordinating conjunction: and, but, for, nor, or, so, or yet. Grandma still rides her Harley motorcycle her toy poodle balances in a basket between the handlebars. motorcycle, and her toy poodle
Let’s try some! Use and, but, for, nor, or, so, or yet to fix the errors that follow. Let’s try some! Use and, but, but, for, nor, nor, or, so, so, or or yet to fix the errors that follow.
1.Darren scooped seven tablespoons of sugar into his coffee, then he splashed cream into the cup and stirred the concoction. coffee, and then he poured
2.We suspected that Tahoe had tipped over the trash he flattened his ears and curled his tail between his legs as we cleaned the kitchen floor. tipped over the trash, for he
3.Lawana planted the bare backyard with an assortment of flowers, butterflies began to visit, sipping nectar from the blooms. flowers, so butterflies began to
4.Serena searched every corner of her bedroom she could not find her math book to study for the final exam. corner of her bedroom, but she
Option 3: Fix the error with a semicolon (;). Use sparingly—three or four times per essay. Don’t capitalize after the semicolon unless the word is a proper noun, one that is always capitalized. Make sure that the semicolon has good posture. Locate the dot right above the comma.
Grandma still rides her Harley motorcycle her toy poodle balances in a basket between the handlebars. motorcycle; her Here’s our sample:
Try to fix the errors that follow—this time with semicolons! Try to fix the errors that follow—this time with semicolons!
1.Smoke billowed from the hot grill plump pork chops lay on a plate, waiting for Uncle Rick to cook them. grill; plump pork chops lay on a
2.Laurie flashed a big smile we cringed at the spinach stuck to her front tooth. Laurie flashed a big smile; we
3.Jiggling his foot, Carlos sat in the waiting room, he dreaded the shot of Novocain and whining drill required to fill his cavity. the waiting room; he dreaded
4.Pushing and grunting, Tyrone tried to budge the heavy refrigerator, finally he decided just to paint around it, leaving a square of dirty beige that he alone knew existed. refrigerator; finally he decided
Option 4: Fix the error with a subordinate conjunction. after although as because before even though if, even if in order that once provided that since so [that implied], so that than that though unless when, whenever where, wherever, whereas whether while
Grandma rides her Harley motorcycle her toy poodle balances in a basket between the handlebars. motorcycle while her toy poodle Here’s our sample:
Remember these general punctuation rules when subordinating one of the clauses in the error. Subordinate clause +, + main clause. Main clause + Ø + subordinate clause. For exceptions to these rules, see Comma Tip 5 ! Comma Tip 5Comma Tip 5 For exceptions to these rules, see Comma Tip !
When Grandma rides her Harley motorcycle, her toy poodle balances in a basket between the handlebars. Here’s our sample: Grandma rides her Harley motorcycle as her toy poodle balances in a basket between the handlebars.
Let’s try fixing some with subordinate conjunctions! Let’s try fixing some with subordinate conjunctions!
1.Jeff licked the soft serve cone, he tried to keep up with the melting ice cream. cone as he tried to keep up Main clause + Ø + subordinate clause.
2.Nathan rudely slurped the spicy soup, Maybelle began loudly crunching tortilla chips. Since Nathan rudely slurped the main clause. +, + Subordinate clause,
3.Harold held his hand under the cold water he burnt his fingers trying to remove the brownies without an oven mitt. the cold water after he burnt Main clause + Ø + subordinate clause.
4.The flowers were wilting in the sun, they waited for rain or the cool spray from the sprinklers. As the flowers were wilting in main clause. +, + Subordinate clause,
Quick Test Directions: Directions: Find and fix all of the comma splices and fused sentences in the items that follow.
1.I went into the bathroom last night, I heard someone singing in Spanish. night. I heard someone night, for I heard someone night; I heard someone night because I heard someone
2.Surprised, I turned on the lights, what idiot was making noise in my bathroom so late at night? lights. What
3.I looked everywhere—behind the door, in the closet, under the bathroom sink—but I couldn't find the source of the music, the singing was really weird. music, and the singing was
4. I listened closely, the singing seemed to be coming from the window above the bathtub, so I stuck my head around the shower curtain and looked in all of the corners. closely. The singing
5.It was unbelievable, there was a spider spinning a web behind my shampoo bottles all the while she was singing Spanish love songs. unbelievable. There bottles; all the while, she was
6.When the spider saw me staring at her, she said, "Yeek," I wasn't used to spiders squeaking in surprise at me in my own bathroom. “Yeek!” I wasn’t used to Yeek!Yeek!
7.When the spider realized I was a human being, she crouched further behind the shampoo bottle I, on the other hand, went to get a can of Raid. shampoo bottle. I, on the
8. When I returned with the can of Raid, I pointed it at the poor spider, wishing for her death, she, as a result, started singing even more beautifully. her death. She, as a result,
9.Did I really want to hurt this poor creature who sang such beautiful Spanish love songs, did I really want to poison her and cause her to die a slow death behind the shampoo bottle? songs? Did I really want to
10. This spider was frightful looking, for she had long hairy legs, bulging eyes, and terrible pinching jaws, but I decided that if she would continue singing in her beautiful manner, I would let her live on the bathroom window ledge. Correct!
11.Every morning since that surprising evening, I listen to my singing spider, who continues to live behind the shampoo bottle. Correct again ! ¡Azucar!¡Azucar!
12.I brush my teeth to the melodic voice of a very talented arachnid, my spider eats whatever unlucky flies get trapped in the house, I've learned to think before I spray Raid. house. I’ve arachnid while my spider eats
The End. The End. Be kind to spiders! Or we’ll crawl into your shorts and bite your thighs! Be kind to spiders! Or we’ll crawl into your shorts and bite your thighs!