1. writer one
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    writer one Member

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    Using italics

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by writer one, Sep 24, 2015.

    I use Italics as a writers style which I have not found yet. I use commas as when talking one stops and gets their breath when speaking. I am also interested in Wikipedia.org/HTML language if I am not sure of the information that is asked for. (The bottom line for me is to be understood without question, but I like you are not prefect yet and neither am I). Even when editing the editor will change a word or sentence because the grammar is wrong to them. I also have a serious problem with grammar, verbs nouns and the like.

    I use paragraphs to simplify the reading. I am a casual writer. It could be problems for me because I emphasize the word (I) to much. Thoughts? writer one
     
  2. Inks
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    Inks Contributing Member

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    Your post is difficult to understand. To respond to the use of commas to denote breaks, as in the case of taking a breath, a serial comma might work. However, if it is a slight pause then you want to use ellipses.
     
  3. ClassyCanuck
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    ClassyCanuck Member

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    In response to using italics, I find the most common use is when the person is thinking. Other writers may use italics to emphasis something important in a sentence, or stress a word in dialogue.
    For Example:

    Did he just say that?
    She glared at the boy before her. A smirk twisted across his face. He did! He did just say that!

    "I said there were too many people here, Ralph." His mother exclaimed.
     
  4. xanadu
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    xanadu Contributing Member Contributor

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    The purpose of italics is, primarily, to emphasize a word or words so that they stand out. I use it sparingly, but sometimes it is called for--mostly in dialogue, but occasionally in heavily biased narrative.

    They are also commonly used to format certain titles (books I know for sure--I believe also ships, movies, music albums, and probably a few others) and to format foreign words. There is also a debate as to their use in fiction to portray thoughts, which I'm not touching with a ten-foot pole as that argument can be hashed out elsewhere.

    Commas are a bit trickier, especially in fiction, because there's a lot of liberty that can be taken. Run-on sentences are not necessarily a problem in prose. Nor are fragments (see what I did there?). I've found commas to be much more of a "feel" thing when writing fiction, rather than strictly abiding by any hard-and-fast rules. Though I do prefer to keep sentences less complex overall, requiring fewer commas. But that's just my style.

    Using the word "I" too much, assuming 1st person narration, is a very common new-writer issue. It's similar to using "He/She" all the time in 3rd, and it comes from a lack of understanding of POV. That's another topic that can fill pages of discussion. I could throw around banalities such as "show don't tell" but I don't think those are helpful to newer writers. They certainly weren't helpful to me, phrased as they were. If you're struggling with sentence structure, reliance on this-then-this-then-that storytelling, or lack of emotional connection to the scenes you're writing, I'd strongly recommend delving deep into POV (much more complex than just which pronouns you're using) to better understand how to engage the reader through your character and narrator.
     
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  5. OurJud
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    OurJud Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm going to stick my neck out here, writer one, and assume English isn't your first language.

    Don't get me wrong, you speak a foreign language far better than I, but to be brutally honest you're going to struggle to get anything accepted, or even read, until you have a better grasp of the language.
     
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  6. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    You should focus more on the commas.
     
  7. writer one
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    writer one Member

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    I use commas because when one speaks they take a breath to me when writing that to is like taking a breath. writer one
     
  8. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    Let me be more clear. Without more commas your work is unclear.
     
  9. writer one
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    writer one Member

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    Do I use to many commas or need to cut them out of the piece? writer one
     
  10. Nicoel
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    Nicoel Contributing Member

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    You need more commas and a better grasp of grammar (i.e. when to use the correct "to/too/two").
    Is this your second language?
     
  11. OurJud
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    OurJud Contributing Member Contributor

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    I've already asked him, but he doesn't appear interested in discussing this, which in truth is his main problem.
     
  12. writer one
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    writer one Member

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    No my first. writer one
     
  13. Nicoel
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    Nicoel Contributing Member

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    He's now claiming English is his first language. If that's the case, my only guess is he's really young still.
     
  14. Nicoel
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    Nicoel Contributing Member

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    How old are you? You need to take some basic literature and English classes. That'll answer most questions you may have!
     
  15. Tenderiser
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    Tenderiser Not a man Contest Administrator Contributor

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    He's 72 according to his profile.

    Writer one, do you really want your work to be read? If you're a 'casual writer' who enjoys writing for the sake of it, maybe you don't need to worry about these things. Just get your ideas on paper and enjoy the process.

    If you want them to be read, it's never too late to learn. I had a very poor education in terms of English language. I was taught the difference between a verb and a noun but that was about as in-depth as it got for me. I learned most of what I know through reading. Even now I usually know if something is right or wrong but I don't always know why and I can't apply the right technical terms to the problem. If there's a particular part you struggle with (like if you wanted to know how to use commas appropriately) there are free articles on the internet for just about everything.
     
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  16. OurJud
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    OurJud Contributing Member Contributor

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    Can I just point out - I'm assuming he won't mind as he explains this in another thread - that writer one has hearing difficulties, making it difficult for him to understand others.

    I wish he'd have explained all this in this thread, to prevent what must have seemed like very harsh comments concerning his difficulty in writing.
     
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  17. Nicoel
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    Nicoel Contributing Member

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    Can you link me to that thread?

    And if that's the case, maybe he can create a free acct with KhanAcademy. Im sure they have subtitles for their "classes" where they explain basic writing and things like that. Could be useful!
     
  18. writer one
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    writer one Member

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  19. writer one
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    writer one Member

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    Understood. Thanks writer one
     
  20. writer one
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    writer one Member

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    What's a POV? writer one
     
  21. writer one
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    writer one Member

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    Good advice all. Maybe I have overstepped my bounds. Can I still babble and think I can write? writer one
     
  22. OurJud
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    OurJud Contributing Member Contributor

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  23. Nicoel
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    Nicoel Contributing Member

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    Of course! Anyone and everyone can write. :) I was "writing" before I could form a sentence. It was unintelligable by everyone except myself, but I was a writer.

    You're far past that point, so no worries! You do have a bit of learning to do - but so do we all.

    And POV means "Point Of View."

    First person POV would be, "I sat on a log."

    Second person POV would be, "You sat on a log."

    Third person would be, "He sat on a log."

    It gets a bit more complicated than that (a quick Google search will give you a more detailed explanation) but that's the basics.
     
  24. writer one
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    writer one Member

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    I still maintain using commas because they are part of writing as is the period. I've just learned that the exclamation mark is a emotional sign. I like the smiles (I think they are called) are a nice sight for humor. I still have a problem with sentence structure and order of the words in the right place in the sentence.

    I am a fanatic about being understood because I use to babble when I write e-mail and I still get "I do not understand" when reading my e-mail back. It might be my low ego because I have also low esteem of myself, why I do not know. I know I like to write yet I am not sure I do. It might be if I am misunderstood it is my fault..

    If I had a argument about it, it would either pride or stubbornness on my part to admit I'm wrong. Could this be deemed as Creative writing? writer one
     
  25. Lyrical
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    Lyrical Frumious Bandersnatch

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    I don't think it would be pride or stubbornness to admit that you are wrong. It takes humility to admit you are wrong.

    If it's not offensive to ask, how often do you read? And what sorts of things do you read? I think reading is the easiest way to learn sentence structure, because you aren't sitting down to memorize a list of rules. Your brain adapts and adopts the language of storytelling as its own when that is all you fill it with.

    Don't get discouraged. Communication is something we are all still trying to master in our own ways. You can do it. We can help you here. I think you'll find a supportive community. I think you could actually use more commas in your sentences, just based off what I have seen in this thread. And smilies are perfectly acceptable in informal settings like this, but I wouldn't use them in storytelling if I were you.
     
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