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Punctuation Pointers

Do you know which is correct: I will finish in three weeks' time or in three weeks time? In one day's time or in one days time? ANSWER: It is correct to say three weeks' time and one day's time. In order to answer this question, you need to understand the main...
Here are the general rules for when to use a comma with which: Place a comma before which if it is introducing a nonrestrictive phrase. Do not place a comma before which if it is part of a prepositional phrase like “in which.” Do not place a comma before which if it introduces an indirect...
There’s is a contraction of there is. It is correct to write, “There’s a hole in my bucket.” It is not correct to write, “There’s three holes in my bucket.” There’s only refers to one item. If you wanted to correct that sentence, you would write, “There are three...
Let's answer the question: "do you put a comma before "because?"  The short answer is when because connects two clauses in a sentence, you don’t need a comma. Because is a subordinating conjunction. It connects a subordinate clause with an independent clause. There should not be a comma between these two clauses. The...
Sometimes too is used with a comma, and sometimes it is not. Both can be correct. Using a comma actually depends on the intention of the writer. The comma adds an emphasis. A comma should also be used before too if there is an abrupt shift in thought. When too is used in the middle...
Do you know when to hyphenate the words “year old”? If you are using “year old” as an adjective, then you need to put a hyphen between the words. For example, you would write “the two-year-old child.” “Two-year-old” is an adjective that describes the child.  Hyphenating Year Old You put a...
When you use a hyphen to connect two words and use those words as an adjective, it is called a compound modifier.  For example: Incorrect: The sweet smelling cake made my stomach growl. This sentence is rather confusing. Is the sweet actually smelling the cake? There needs to be a hyphen should...
Quotation marks show that those words are being spoken. They are used a lot in dialogue in fiction writing. Dialogue is words spoken by characters. Quotation marks are always in pairs, with the first set opening the quote and the second set closing the quote. Journalists also use quotation marks...
Introductory Phrase An introductory phrase is a short clause that starts a sentence. It doesn’t have its own subject and verb. Instead, it uses the main clause’s subject and verb. Introductory phrases help to set the stage for the main part of the sentence. They let the reader know that the central...
Is it others, others' or others'? These are three words are obviously all versions of the word other and are often confused. Let's shed a little light, shall we? The possessive singular form of the word other is other’s. The plural form of the word other is others. The possessive...