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Archive for the ‘Punctuation’ Category

Using Dashes in Text

By Judy Vorfeld Do you often won­der if you’re using dashes prop­erly? Dashes have dis­tinct uses that often seem blurred in today’s soci­ety. Here are some ideas for writ­ers and those involved in busi­ness writ­ing. A dash usu­ally replaces a comma, semi­colon, colon, or paren­the­ses. When used this […]

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Book Titles on the Web

By Judy Vorfeld What’s the proper way to dis­play the title of a book on a Web page? The tra­di­tional method of under­lin­ing makes it con­fus­ing for Web users, who expect an under­lined word or phrase to be a hyper­link. Should the title be bolded? Italicized? What about quo­ta­tion marks? A […]

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Attributive Nouns

By Judy Vorfeld Do you feel okay punc­tu­at­ing pos­ses­sives until you have to decide on “men’s room,” “mens’ room,” or “mens room?” I have peo­ple reg­u­larly ask­ing for the answer. Let’s inves­ti­gate. In this case, we’re talk­ing about attribu­tive nouns, not com­pounded nouns. Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary says an […]

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Abbreviating Months and Days

By Judy Vorfeld Wonder how to abbre­vi­ate days of the week and months? Let’s take three excel­lent style guides and see what they offer. THE GREGG REFERENCE MANUAL, TENTH EDITION (502) says, “Days of the week, names of the months … should be abbre­vi­ated only on busi­ness forms, […]

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Figures of Speech: Using Quotation Marks

By Judy Vorfeld When should we use quo­ta­tion marks for fairly com­mon expres­sions and fig­ures of speech, includ­ing slang? (A fig­ure of speech is a word or phrase such as a metaphor, sim­ile, hyper­bole , or per­son­i­fi­ca­tion, accord­ing to Wikipedia.) Quotation marks are rarely needed for com­mon expres­sions, says […]

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