Watch that Pesky Comma when you write.
First of all, I must stress I am not one of those people who bang on about grammar. But, if I can help just one person improve the readability of their writing, this blog has met its purpose.
The one thing I see over and over again, when I am editing, is run-on sentences. This means you are incorrectly using a comma.
Why should I avoid the comma splice in my writing?
Too many run-on sentences make your writing difficult to read. There is little time to pause, meaning the reader has to put the pauses in themselves.
Why does this matter?
Pauses are so important. Without a pause in the perfect place, the meaning of your writing could be lost. Run-on sentences switch from idea to idea. They don’t allow the reader to reflect on what you are trying to communicate.
It can make your writing feel overly complicated, and when you are trying to entice that perfect client to do what you want, simplicity is key.
READ YOUR WORK OUT LOUD
Listen to where you have put the pauses. When are you taking a breath? If it is difficult to read out loud, it is likely to have commas in the wrong place.
Don’t be afraid of short sentences. You are not sitting a GCSE English exam. Short sentences get straight to the point. They give your reader the information it requires in an easy to read format.
I like chocolate, I know it’s bad for me.
I like chocolate, but I know it’s bad for me.
These words may seem insignificant. However, look at the improvement. These coordinating conjunctions are small yet mighty.
Hands up if you ACTUALLY know what a semi-colon is for!
I just wouldn’t bother unless you are going for the ‘intellectual’ look.
No one reading your blog is going to be impressed – except maybe your GCSE English teacher of they happen to read it.
- Don’t go mad with the commas
- Use simple sentences
- Remember your coordinating conjunctions
- Avoid the semi-colon
- Read your work out loud to check
Look, I don’t want you to feel anxious about writing. Lots of people don’t write because they don’t feel they have the correct skills to do it.
This is all about improving your writing. Making it as readable as possible. Helping you engage and entice your readers.
If you are having panic attacks about grammar, send me a message and I will be happy to calm you down.