I hope the spirit of Charles Schultz allows me fair use of this little gem, as it’s a whole lot more entertaining than the slide show I’m offering with this post — or that perfectly putrid headline that sits atop it!
I’ve posted my share of rants about the writing quality in the blogosphere. But bloggers aren’t the only ones who wreak havoc with our language. Some of my students can butcher a sentence with the best of ’em. But they’re compelled to listen to me. You are not.
The careless writer is everywhere today, and the growth of social media, text messaging and micro-blogging only amplifies the problem. Our instant-message culture tends to ignore the important task of editing and proofreading. And sadly, most people never bother to learn the rules of grammar, usage and punctuation.
Careful writers respect the language and work at their craft. Careful writers believe that the quality of their writing says as much about them as the messages they try to impart.
Today I offer some help to the “punctuationly challenged” in a lesson I call “Perfecting Your Punctuation.”
Here’s the show, now posted to SlideShare, revised following Dino’s comment that made me feel so Web 1.0. If you’ve not toured SlideShare, do yourself a favor. Lots of resources there.
Update: I was having so much fun with the slide show that I missed this piece on the much abused and under appreciated semicolon. It appeared in yesterday’s New York Times. Thanks to Judy Gombita for the link. I’m no fan of the semicolon. Two short sentences are almost always better than one.