Grammar Tip: Comma Functions!
Grandpa might die! How to save grandpa from cannibalism?
You don't need guns or army training to save Grandpa.
You just need to learn how to punctuate correctly.
A comma actually does the following things:
- separates items in a series.
Note that the comma goes before the final "and." Diana Hacker (author of the bestselling and lifesaving A Writer's Reference series) also discusses this in her fantastic books.
[NOTE: There's some debate about placing the comma before the 'and'. Newspapers and certain publishing houses sometimes don't use the final comma due to space allotment or individual style.]
- separates two independent clauses when used with a conjunction (one of the FANBOYS - For, And, Nor, But, Or, Yet, So).
EX: I hate movies, but I love plays.
The first independent clause is I hate movies.
The second independent clause is I love plays.
They are connected by a comma and a FANBOYS (coordinating conjunction).
- separates a dependent clause (introductory clause) from an independent clause
EX: After Anne went for a walk, she made dinner.
The dependent clause is After Anne went for a walk.
The independent clause is she made dinner.
The comma connects them.
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