Author Topic: The dreaded comma splice!  (Read 1038 times)

TimothyEllis

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Re: The dreaded comma splice!
« Reply #50 on: October 15, 2020, 02:25:27 PM »
In other news, it appears we've moved on to the subject of the nonessential clause.  :icon_eek:

In other news, it appears we've moved on, to the subject of the nonessential clause.  grint
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Jeff Tanyard

Re: The dreaded comma splice!
« Reply #51 on: October 15, 2020, 02:33:29 PM »
In other news, it appears we've moved on to the subject of the nonessential clause.  :icon_eek:

In other news, it appears we've moved on, to the subject of the nonessential clause.  grint


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notthatamanda

Re: The dreaded comma splice!
« Reply #52 on: October 15, 2020, 08:21:12 PM »
Not to blow this discussion up too much, but I just sent these three examples to one of the 50 folk kindly alpha-reading my latest. (Not examples of fine writing, or even sentences I would use, and I only put them out there to discuss the 'commas around and' issue.)

I believe (although I'm not certain) that the first is technically correct, but it has too many pauses for me.
The second sounds better to me when I hear the words in my head.
The third makes me want to gouge my eyes out.


Septimus pressed the button, and, with a smile, he opened the door.
Septimus pressed the button and, with a smile, he opened the door.
Septimus pressed the button, and with a smile, he opened the door.


Some might write 'Septimus pressed the button and opened the door with a smile' - no thanks, I prefer my doors serious.

Just to be a contrarian, the third is the only sentence of the bunch I can stand to look at. :D Two sentences joined with a conjunction and a necessary comma, and a clause in the second sentence, separated by a comma.

Is that what it is?  Grin

I would never put a comma after an and, always before.

Putting the comma after the and breaks the flow of the sentence completely. For me, anyway.
I hear my elementary school teacher saying, "Use commas where you would parenthesis," so #2 looks the most correct to me.

Probably I would break it up to be:

Septimus pressed the button and smiled. When the buzzer rang, he opened the door.
 

TimothyEllis

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Re: The dreaded comma splice!
« Reply #53 on: October 15, 2020, 08:30:00 PM »
Septimus pressed the button and smiled. When the buzzer rang, he opened the door.

Winner.  :littleclap
Genres: Space Opera/Fantasy/Cyberpunk, with elements of LitRPG and GameLit, with a touch of the Supernatural. Also Spiritual and Games.



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Simon Haynes

Re: The dreaded comma splice!
« Reply #54 on: October 15, 2020, 08:44:53 PM »

Probably I would break it up to be:

Septimus pressed the button and smiled. When the buzzer rang, he opened the door.

Oh yes, I agree entirely. My approach is always 'reword reword' instead of faffing around with Ye Olde Rules of Commas. I'm certainly not going to leaf through Elements of Style for 20 mins if I can just spend five seconds editing the sentence on the fly - avoiding the problem altogether.



 

notthatamanda

Re: The dreaded comma splice!
« Reply #55 on: October 15, 2020, 11:13:08 PM »
Septimus pressed the button and smiled. When the buzzer rang, he opened the door.

Winner.  :littleclap
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PJ Post

Re: The dreaded comma splice!
« Reply #56 on: October 15, 2020, 11:37:21 PM »
I don't get all the fuss. It's Art. We can do whatever we want.

I resolve this issue by using Word's reading aloud function. If it sounds wonky when read aloud, it sounds wonky when read silently - so, I add punctuation as necessary, including commas, to create pauses. I do the same thing to slow down a sentence or to give a moment space or signal its importance. With the proliferation of reading apps, this is probably an approach worth considering.
 
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Lynn

Re: The dreaded comma splice!
« Reply #57 on: October 16, 2020, 12:39:11 AM »
PJ is the winner. That's what I do: what I want. ;)
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notthatamanda

Re: The dreaded comma splice!
« Reply #58 on: October 16, 2020, 12:59:06 AM »
If I came across as trying to convince others that I am right, I apologize. Mostly I am just procrastinating here.
 

Luke Everhart

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Re: The dreaded comma splice!
« Reply #59 on: October 16, 2020, 01:39:49 AM »
I don't get all the fuss. It's Art. We can do whatever we want.

I resolve this issue by using Word's reading aloud function. If it sounds wonky when read aloud, it sounds wonky when read silently

Well... :icon_think: for me, to the extent it's art it's commercial art; so, no, if I want to keep the commercial part in there with its implications of lots of people wanting to pay for it, then I can't do whatever I want. Personally, though, I don't really think of commercial/genre fiction books as art (though I do think of literary books more that way). I think of them as entertainment, the 'E' in 'A&E'.
(Of course this is all hypothetical for me since I've yet to pull the trigger and actually publish so... 🤷‍♂️ It'll happen though! I'm just juggling another entrepreneurial venture right now so it's slowed things down a lot.)

I do think using audio playbook of a book is a good way to see how it reads mentally to fine tune it. 👍
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Lynn

Re: The dreaded comma splice!
« Reply #60 on: October 16, 2020, 02:05:06 AM »
There are grammar rules I follow when it suits me and rules I don't follow unless it suits me. :)

What matters most to me is:
1. Clarity
2. Reading ease
3. Emotion

I use comma splices when I feel they're the right thing to use. And technically, comma splices are allowed in some instances anyway even within the rules. :)

Quote
According to Garner's Modern English Usage: [M]ost usage authorities accept comma splices when (1) the clauses are short and closely related, (2) there is no danger of a miscue, and (3) the context is informal [...] But even when all three criteria are met, some readers are likely to object.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comma_splice

My little Harbrace College Handbook of old says the same thing.

Quote
Either a comma or a semicolon may be used between short main clauses ... when the clauses are parallel in form and unified in thought

This is not meant to educate anyone, btw. LOL. I just want to contribute to the conversation. :D
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Anarchist

Re: The dreaded comma splice!
« Reply #61 on: October 16, 2020, 02:44:58 AM »
I don't get all the fuss. It's Art. We can do whatever we want.

For me, it's business.

But I agree with you. I'll happily sacrifice pedantry on the alter of readability.
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