"I have grown fond of semicolons in recent years. It is almost always a greater pleasure to come across a semicolon than a period. The period tells you that that is that; if you didn't get all the meaning you wanted or expected, anyway you got all the writer intended to parcel out and now you have to move along. But with a semicolon there you get a pleasant little feeling of expectancy; there is more to come; read on; it will get clearer."
The not-so-humble semicolon [ ; ]. Use it:
to help sort out a monster list:
There were citizens from Bangor, Maine; Hartford, Connecticut; Boston, Massachusetts; and Newport, Rhode Island.
to separate closely related independent clauses:
My grandmother seldom goes to bed this early; she's afraid she'll miss out on something.
The semicolon allows the writer to imply a relationship between nicely balanced ideas without actually stating that relationship. (Instead of saying that *because* my grandmother is afraid she'll miss out on something, we have implied the because. Thus the reader is involved in the development of an idea: a clever, subliminal way of engaging the reader's participation as she reads.)
It is the balance of the see-saw. It joins related ideas. It prevents comma splices and heals your split ends. It's a useful mark that will NOT damage any reader's experience of a story as long as that reader has proper reading comprehension and has been taught the traffic signals of grammar (period, full stop; comma, pause; semicolon signaling a strong connection between two independent clauses, colon signaling that the second clause is explanatory in some way or illuminates the first clause, parentheticals for salient asides).
So fear not the powerful punctuation marks.
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The Book Pre-Ordered for $12
Free Read of First Three Chapters in PDF Form
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WHOA. You came here for a free poem, not a sales pitch. Okay, here are a few free poems.
Five syllables here
Seven more syllables here
Are ya happy now?!
You're always typing.
Well, let's see you ignore my
sitting on your hands.
My human is home!
I'm so ecstatic I have
Made a puddle.