Punctuation

punctuation

Punctuation is essential to any piece of writing. It allows for pacing and order in your story. Try to read a piece of text without any punctuation:

the instant hailey shut the door behind her and saw the cab driver he reminded her of her need to get home her nipples pressed hard against the smooth creme colored fabric of her Marilyn Monroe dress piercing blue eyes looked deep into her soul where to miss his words were more than just a question it was a caress as he spoke his eyes touched her body from top to toe why it made her feel safe instead of irritated hailey didnt know and didnt care to explain to herself she gave him her address

And then, with punctuation:

The instant Hailey shut the door behind her and saw the cab driver, he reminded her of her need to get home. Her nipples pressed hard against the smooth creme-colored fabric of her Marilyn Monroe dress. Piercing blue eyes looked deep into her soul.
“Where to, Miss?”
His words were more than just a question. It was a caress. As he spoke, his eyes touched her body from top to toe. Why it made her feel safe instead of irritated, Hailey didn’t know and didn’t care to explain to herself. She gave him her address.
From: Yellow Cab Service

It reads a lot different with punctuation marks, than without.

Below you find some common punctuation marks and explanations of their use:

Visual Name Explanation
. Period A period is used at the end of most sentences, but certainly at the end of a declarative sentence. It’s also used after most abbreviations.

; Semicolon The semicolon indicates a longer pause than a comma and a shorter pause than a period. It’s used between two closely-related clauses that could be separate sentences, and also used between clauses when one or both contains a comma.

, Comma It indicates a pause in a sentence, but also helps to clarify a sentence when there is a possibility of confusion. Use a comma to separate items in a list or to set apart nonessential clauses, or use it after an introductory phrase.

(   ) Parenthesis Use the parenthesis to set off extra information that further explains or clarifies an idea, but it isn’t necessary to the meaning of the sentence.

! Exclamation mark An exclamation mark is used after a statement that expresses strong emotion, or an urgent command, but also to indicate excitement.

? Question mark When you or a character asks a question, always put a question mark at the end of your sentence.

: Colon Use the colon before the part of a sentence that explains what has just been stated. It’s also used before a long quotation or a list.

Apostrophe An apostrophe shows possession or ownership, and is used in place of a letter that has been left out i.e. don’t.

” “ Quote marks Quote marks are used to show someone’s exact marks, or to indicate that someone us speaking. It’s also used to set off quoted material in writing. Single quote marks show a quotation inside a quotation.

Hyphen Joins some compound words, or two separate words that are meant to be read together as a single idea. It’s also used to signal a word break at the end of a line of tekst.

[   ] Brackets Used to show words in a quote that weren’t the speaker or writer’s original words. It can also be used to make a comment on the tekst, to correct an error or to fill in a missing or changed word.

Dash It emphasizes words or phrases or is used to signal a change or a break in thought.

/ Slash A slash shows a choice and it’s also used as a separator between lines of poetry.

Ellipsis A pause or interruption is indicated by using an ellipses, but also to show that a statement is trailing off or unfinished. It’s also used to show where words have been left out of a quotation.

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