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Posts Tagged ‘don’t mess with my punctuation’

The Battle of Comma Hill

Man, the last time I was having aneurysms like this over a copy-edit, it was because somebody was going after my semicolons. Now it’s my commas, which I sprinkle liberally throughout my writing, in defiance of the rules of grammar but service to the flow and pacing of a sentence.

I’m literally having bargaining sessions with myself. “If you let him delete the comma in that sentence, you can fight back for the pair in this one. Come on. It’s okay. Do you know how many of your readers will notice the presence or lack of a comma there? NONE.”

But I’m a reader! And I notice! the little voice cries back.

Step away from the commas, honey. Save your energy for dying upon the hill of I Want Those To Be A Compound Sentence, Dammit, Not Two Separate Sentences.

It’s pathetic but true: writers do spend their time and energy obsessing about such things.