Presentation on theme: "Punctuation and Grammar Avoiding the minefields and quagmires of editing."— Presentation transcript:
Punctuation and Grammar Avoiding the minefields and quagmires of editing
Proofreading words v. proofing ideas Word-level proofing Reading backwards Referring to stylebook, writer’s handbook, textbook, sources and websites, including course page course page Toolkit Copyediting symbols (in your stylebooks)
Sometimes it’s just a little typo Scared Heart Untied Methodist Church Musharraf addresses pubic outcry Brain Carol of Barry College Condoleeza Rice
Usage that/which who/whom its/it’s hyphens/dashes farther/further over/more than more to come on these confusing words
What is punctuation for? Serves readers Helps readers comprehend meaning Prevents stumbling when reading aloud Underlines meaning Prevents misunderstanding Facilitates the activity of reading
Commas Eats Shoots & Leaves Eats, Shoots & Leaves What’s the difference? A world of difference, right?
Commas Children drive slowly Children, drive slowly Drive slowly! Children at play Drive carefully! Slow children at play
Commas Verily, I say unto thee, This day thou shalt be with me in Paradise! Verily I say unto thee this day, Thou shalt be with me in Paradise!
Commas: When to use them Commas in a series Commas with modifiers Commas with nonessential phrases, like parentheses Commas with introductory phrases and clauses “A rabid, diseased beast, the man didn’t want to put his dog to sleep Commas with ages, addresses, dates Commas in attribution and quotations
Semi-colons Know when to use them; know when not to use them. Closely related phrases, but a full stop is too much. They are not commas, nor are they used as commas.
Colons: They’re a lot like invoices They “deliver the goods that have been invoiced in the preceding words.” (H.W. Fowler) “This much is clear, Watson: It was the baying of an enormous hound.” Tom has only one rule in life: Never eat anything bigger than your head. I pulled out all the stops for this assignment: I used a semi-colon!
Note the differences Tom locked himself in the closet. Dook lost to the Heels. Tom locked himself in the closet; Dook lost to the Heels. Tom locked himself in the closet: Dook lost to the Heels.
Possessives For sale: CD’s, DVD’s Its v. It’s Their | They’re Whose | Who’s Your | You’re
These are all correct: The bus’s tires The Jones’ house; Mr. Jones’s house children’s playground women’s movement babies’ bibs Keats’s poem New York Times’s main printing facility Achilles’s heel
What’s wrong with these? Student’s Entrance Adult Learner’s Week Berry professor’s wives Lands’ End (actual company name) Mens Toilets Pansy’s for sale Cyclist’s Only
Hyphens (they hold together) Pains-taking 30-car pileup “I reached for the w-w-w-watering can.” The 2-year-old and the 3-year-old played together. Re-enter Foot-pedal Fine-tooth comb
Parallel structure & agreement Verb tenses Singular and plural nouns Subjects and verbs
Parallel structure problems One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well. One cannot think well, have love, fall asleep, if dinner was bad. Billy likes fielding and hitting. Billy likes to field and hitting.
Avoiding cliches like the plague :-)cliches last but not least give 110% (I heard 2,000% yesterday!) untimely death (think about this one) few and far between stick to the game plan off the wagon, on the wagon or circling the wagons
Brevity is the soul of lingerie (Dorothy Parker, via Hamlet) Write a short story in just six words “Failed SAT. Lost scholarship. Invented rocket.” William Shatner “Computer, did we bring batteries? Computer?” Eileen Gunn “Gown removed carelessly. Head, less so.” Joss Whedon “Longed for him. Got him. Shit.” Margaret Atwood Wasted day. Wasted life. Dessert, please.” Steven Meretzky