We Created A Quiz On Punctuation
What's so important about punctuation? As court reporters, aren't we merely writing down what other people say? While it is true that we are taking down the spoken word, it is also equally true that a large portion of 'taking down the spoken word' includes punctuating.
Let's say you have the following run-on sentence:
And then I walked to the park and the dog bit my leg well not right away but pretty soon after I got there I saw the dog and he came running over to me but then I started to back up and he stopped and then I stopped and then from out of nowhere this other dog came over and then ...
You can see from the sentence above that proper punctuation will be the difference between jibberish and meaningful thoughts. If I were to come across a sentence like that (God forbid), I would use my Super Simple Rule of Punctuation which is to place a period as soon as there is a complete thought. I do this to make my life simpler and to get the job done sooner and -- last but not least -- to produce well-punctuated sentences:
I might punctuate it like this:
And then I walked to the park. And the dog bit my leg. Well not right away, but pretty soon after I got there, I saw the dog. And he came running over to me. But then I started to back up. And he stopped. And then I stopped. And then from out of nowhere this other dog came over. And then ...
You see, I punctuated that sentence with periods and only a few commas. Remember, the Super Simple Rule of Punctuation says that as soon as the complete thought is there, slam down a period. And do this no matter what the next sentence starts with. You'll notice that some of the sentences now start with and or but. I do not care. Some people do, I don't.
Anyway, I wrote all of that as an introduction to my newest quiz on punctuating. Here is it is: Punctuation for Court Reporters. Enjoy!
Tuesday, September 15, 2009