• Member Since 30th Jan, 2013
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Viking ZX


Author of Science-Fiction and Fantasy novels! Oh, and some fanfiction from time to time.

More Blog Posts1273

Jan
17th
2022

Being a Better Writer: The Oxford Comma and Commas in General · 10:02pm January 17th

Hello readers, and welcome back to another Monday installment of Being a Better Writer! Though today just isn’t any old Monday. Today is also Martin Luther King Jr. Day, so named in the honor of the individual whose name it bears.

Don’t know who that is? You should! If his name is unfamiliar to you past the holiday bearing it, I’d suggest a quick Google. Maybe read a speech of his. Or two. See why so much of what he said is still held in such high regard all these years later.

Now, before we dive into today’s post, I do have one little bit of news that went up as I was writing this: LTUE has announced their COVID-19 requirements. You can find the full thing on the Facebook post here, but I don’t doubt it will be up on their site shortly if it isn’t already. To whit, these are the requirements given:

  • You must have either proof of vaccination or a current, negative Covid test (within 72 hours) at check-in to attend.
  • Mask wearing, mouth and nose, enforced. Exceptions for eating and drinking, but neither will be allowed in certain areas. Panelists will be able to remove masks while paneling for accessibility purposes.
  • Seating will be spaced wider to aid with distancing.

As of right now, there is no plan to cancel and be online only. I hope it stays that way!

So then with that news out of the way, and with the day growing late already, let’s dive into today’s topic: The Oxford comma! Plus some general comma useage and advice.

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Comments ( 1 )

Well. If I hadn't already cancelled my LTUE plans, this would led to that anyway.

Ah, commas. Everyone struggles with them in some way. I think the biggest issue I have as a reviewer is remembering that people look at them differently. Some people share my perspective. Plenty of good writers do not. For the latter, their writing looks wrong to me even as I can see what they're doing and why. It can be very easy to jump on them as a sign of a bad writer. But then I recall that my own opinions towards commas is constantly changing, and on any given day I might decide that one situation is or isn't a good one for a comma (I deleted three for this post already). I think, for our collective sanity, we just need to look at commas as something that not everyone is going to agree on.

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