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This is discussion archived from a time before the current discussion method was installed.

Working Title: Wanton Cruelty To The Common Comma: From YKTTW

deleted the example of "All The Pretty Horses", because it is not at all an example of an author making grammatical errors or failing to grasp proper use of language. McCarthy's writing is stylistic and purposeful, and the example given was just complaining about books you don't like.

Pro-Mole: Following that thought train, should Saramago example go away, too? Because I see his use of paragraphs as stylistic as well...

On an unrelated note, either we fabricate a trope for stylistic misuse of language(didn't we have this already?), or we just accept these stuff here.

Random Surfer: Troper Tale: I used to have a supervisor who thought "i.e." meant "in example," and when reading aloud would say "in example" instead of "i.e."

  • If you are saying or spelling out numbers you should only use "and" to indicate a decimal place or fractions (e.g. 2 12 = two and one half, 1.3 = one and three tenths). 108 is pronounced "one hunred eight", not "one hundred and eight"... [1]!
(1) Why? It is one hundred and eight. (2) If there is a reason, publishing companies have been ignoring it since at least 1956. Deleting. —Document N

Rissa: This might be regional. I've heard that "one hundred eight" is more common in American English and "one hundred and eight" in British. Either way, it's debatable and so probably doesn't belong on the page (unlike all those apostrophe's, which are wrong no matter where you're from).
Isn't the correct quote "Five exclamation points, the sure sign of an insane mind."? Unless he twisted the quote and used it in another book.

Atz: It's been used several times, in slightly different forms, including both the "underwear" and "insane mind" flavours.


((Donaldthe Potholer)) I've encountered this problem in quite a few fanfics and am wondering if I'm alone in this. It would go in as a subpoint "Bob's Dialog with Alice"
  • This one needs to be in quotes to preserve the paragraph structure:
"Fourth of all," continued Bob, "the speaker and his/her actions belong in the same paragraph."
"Why is that, Bob?" asked Alice.
"Because otherwise, the readers could get confused and mistake who is speaking." Alice persisted.
"But shouldn't quotes begin a paragraph?" Bob shook his head.
"Not necessarily." Alice shrugged.


Twilightdusk: This passage just got cut as I was going to add to it so I'll ask my question here:

  • Dear Jonathan Boakes: "Mr/Mr." is the abbreviation of "Mister". It is appropriate to use a dot after it in the US, not in the UK. Similarly, "Mrs/Mrs." is the abbrevation of "Mistress". "Miss", however, is NOT an abbreviation of anything, and thus it is never correct to refer to characters in Dark Fall as "Miss. Grable" and "Miss. Fly".

I had always learned that Mrs/Mrs. is short for "Missus" and is to be used to address a married woman, while Miss (not an abbreviation, itself abbreviated Ms/Ms.) is used to address unmarried women. Am I alone here or do other people use them as such as well? (Mistress, by the way, being used to refer to a girlfriend of a married man.)

Atz: I learned similar usage. A married woman has the title of "missus", abbreviated as Mrs. A girl or unmarried woman has the title of "mistress", which is abbreviated to miss (compare with "master" for a boy). "Miss" can also be used to directly address a young woman in place of "madame" ("Can I help you, miss?"). However, the use of "mistress" is somewhat archaic, and it is now used primarily to refer to lovers. "Ms." is a generic title which can be applied to any female regardless of marital status or age, but is also sometimes used as an abbreviation for "miss". I have never heard of "Mrs." being used as an abbreviation for "mistress".

Twilightdusk: This being the case, let's assume that different regions have different customs on this topic. As such, it does not belong on the main part of this page, and was rightly cut. As far as we know, the original author grew up with Mrs. being Mistress and had never encountered Miss until the work he had a problem with.