1. Lacyda

    Lacyda Guest

    Bettering my writing abilities

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Lacyda, Oct 18, 2017.

    Hello everyone, I am a new member and I wanted to ask for advice.

    During a writing class in high school and even now in my general communications class, I struggle with making my writing error free. The first issue that I would really like to work on is comma splice errors. I have no idea what that means, therefore I also don't know how to fix it. If anyone has tips or can help me out in any way, I would be so grateful.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. izzybot

    izzybot Transhuman Autophage Contributor

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    To put it another way, it's two complete 'thoughts' joined by a comma. You fix it by using a proper conjunction, such as 'therefore' or 'but', or by replacing the comma with a period.
     
  3. John Calligan

    John Calligan Contributor Contributor

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    Isn't a semicolon an option?

    Tom hates bears, one time he was chased by one.

    Tom hates bears; one time he was chased by one.
     
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  4. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    Yep.
     
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  5. NiallRoach

    NiallRoach Contributor Contributor

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    One way I used to think of this was whether or not, if you heard the two parts of a sentence in isolation, they would make sense.

    "I like him, so I got his number" doesn't qualify, ergo no splice.
     
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  6. NiallRoach

    NiallRoach Contributor Contributor

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    Some people have a bizarre hate boner for semi colons; I suspect it stems from fear of them.
     
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  7. The Dapper Hooligan

    The Dapper Hooligan (V) ( ;,,;) (v) Contributor

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    I think it's more when people get to high-school/university they discover semicolons exist and start putting them everywhere; especially places they don't belong; so they've become sort of the unofficial badge of the amateur.
     
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  8. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    My impression has always been that Americans supposedly don't understand them, so they're avoided in American books so as not to scare off the readers.
     
  9. Iain Sparrow

    Iain Sparrow Banned Contributor

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    I'm partial to em dashes.
    I use them with reckless abandon, then—my editor deletes them with recklesser abandon— replacing the graceful stroke of my em dash with a comma, period, or an ugly semicolon.
     
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  10. archer88i

    archer88i Banned Contributor

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    I try to limit myself to just one semicolon per paragraph. Also just one $64 dollar word per page. It's hard out on these streets.
     
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  11. John Calligan

    John Calligan Contributor Contributor

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    You can still make money that way.
     
  12. The Dapper Hooligan

    The Dapper Hooligan (V) ( ;,,;) (v) Contributor

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    I used to use parenthesis like mad. Sometimes I would go on multiple parenthetical digressions per sentence. Looking back on it now it's like the literary version of a rambling grandpa story, but the important thing was I had an onion on my belt...
     
  13. Poetical Gore

    Poetical Gore Member

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    Oh, I hate them. Reminds me of business english. You would have a better chance of finding a religious character in a Stephen King book who is not evil than finding a semicolon in anything I write. I think they look ugly on the page.
     
  14. Homer Potvin

    Homer Potvin Get off my Balzac... Staff Contributor

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    Which was the style at the time...
     
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