1. RosyIvory
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    RosyIvory New Member

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    Should I use a comma or an exclamation point

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by RosyIvory, Apr 26, 2010.

    In: Weird he is a genius. Tom, you've got to admit it.

    Is it
    Weird! he is a genius. Tom, you've got to admit it.
    or
    Weird, he is a genius. Tom, you've got to admit it.


    I think they both are acceptable, but what would determine which one goes when?
     
  2. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    I assume that this is someone speaking?

    I think that the word "Weird" is effectively a sentence - it communicates "That's weird." or "That was weird." or "He's weird." or something of the sort. So it should stand as its own sentence.

    So:

    "Weird! He is a genius. Tom, you've got to admit it."
    or
    "Weird. He is a genius. Tom, you've got to admit it."

    "Tom" also puzzles me. Placed where it is, it says to me that the speaker is talking to a group that includes Tom, and then specifically turning to Tom. If he's just speaking to Tom, I'd make the line:

    "Weird. He is a genius, Tom. You've got to admit it."
    or
    "Weird. He is a genius, Tom, you've got to admit it." though I don't like this one as well.

    ChickenFreak
     
  3. tonten
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    tonten Senior Member

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    imo, it can be written with a period, exclamation mark, or none at all. It just depends on the tone you are trying to covey or how the character says it.

    "Weird he is a genius. Tom, you've got to admit it." is totally fine
     
  4. zaffy
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    zaffy Contributing Member

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    Why weird?
     
  5. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    Weird! He is a genius. Tom, you've got to admit it.
    or
    Weird! He is a genius, Tom, you've got to admit it.
    or
    Weird... He is a genius. Tom, you've got to admit it.
    or
    Weird... He is a genius, Tom, you've got to admit it.
    or
    Weird! He is a genius. Tom, you've got to admit it.
    or
    Weird...he is a genius, Tom, you've got to admit it.

    No comma after 'weird'.
    Generally, in British punctuation, and according to guidelines for the publisher that I follow, when an ellipsis is used there can be three dots and a full stop followed by a space OR three dots and a space to signify the end of a sentence. No space if the sentence continues. This may be different in the US, or vary according to publisher, I don't know.
     
  6. Halcyon
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    Halcyon Contributing Member Contributor

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    Definitely "Weird! He is a genius, Tom, you've got to admit it."

    In my humble opinion, of course. ;)
     
  7. digitig
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    digitig Contributing Member Contributor

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    One thing others haven't picked up: lower case after an exclamation mark is archaic (although I used it recently on this board for deliberate effect), and even the archaic case it wouln't be used there.
     
  8. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    halcyon's choice is the best, imo...

    the markless and the comma versions make no sense and wouldn't be correct grammar...
     

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