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Syntax Training | Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

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January 19, 2017

Comments

Mandy

I love reading this blog. It is truly helping me become a better writer. Thank you!

Beatriz

Rochester, and Albany? Is this correct? I thought that when you use "and" you do not use comma in between... at least in Europe :)
Beatriz

Chapa

Thank you. Great post, Lynn.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi Beatriz,

The serial, or Oxford, comma is optional. I estimate that more than 90 percent of style guides recommend using it. I always use it.

Lynn

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Mandy and Chapa, thanks for your positive words!

Lynn

Marianna Greer

I really enjoy your blog! Is the comma necessary after the word conference in Passage 1? Thanks!

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi Marianna,

Yes, the comma is necessary. It separates the two parts of the compound sentence. Whenever you connect two sentences with the conjunction AND, BUT, OR, NOR, SO, YET, or FOR, you need a comma before the conjunction. If you left it out, you might get a confusing result like this one:

Carol recently lost her job and her mind
is made up about moving to Dallas.

Inserting a comma after the first clause ("Carol recently lost her job") eliminates the confusion.

Lynn

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Lynn Gaertner-Johnston
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