My books can be purchased as e-books for only $1.99. If interested, just click here: Books.
Match Play is a golf/suspense novel. Dust of Autumn is a bloody one set in upstate New York. Prairie View is set in South Dakota, with a final scene atop Rattlesnake Butte. Life in the Arbor is a children's book about Rollie Rabbit and his friends (on about a fourth grade level). The Black Widow involves an elaborate extortion scheme. Doggy-Dog World is my memoir. And ES3 is a description of my method for examining English sentence structure.
In case anyone is interested in any of my past posts, an archive list can be found at the bottom of this page.
My newest novel, Happy Valley, can be found here.
Monday, August 3
Swan Song, Cecil, & Direct Address
I still don’t feel comfortable going to Facebook either to read other peoples’ posts or to post anything for myself. Ninety-five percent of what’s said there is so empty, so meaningless. I get a notification about someone’s birthday and go there to find countless messages all saying “Happy birthday Joe” (insert any other name you like). There’s seldom anything personalized. And almost without exception, there’s no comma to set off the name. Is the comma designating direct address a thing of the past? Let this old English codger explain. We used to enclose in commas persons being spoken to directly in a sentence, indicating to the reader that the name isn’t part of the sentence, almost like we’re putting it in parentheses. Look at this old grammatical chestnut in which we have two speakers, Little Red Riding Hood and the Big Bad Wolf: “I feel like eating, Grannie,” and “I feel like eating Grannie.” Can you tell which says what? Can you see the importance of that comma? Well, Grannie certainly sees it. It makes all the difference in the world to her. Texting and Twittering have done so much to change the way we communicate, some of the changes good, some bad. I think the inattention of too many of our young communicators regarding proper phrasing and punctuation is regrettable. And Grannie agrees. Here she is, agreeing and waving goodbye.
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