Crystal Rivas September 21, 2008
ENG 11 Section: 1853
Keys for Writers
“Chapter 8 (Punctuation Mechanics, Spelling)”
“Use only an apostrophe to signal possession in plural nouns already ending in –S.”
“My students’ suggestion.” (451) this is an example used within the text to explain the quote to me. From the time I could remember I’ve been aware of the fact that an apostrophe was used to signal possession. I’ve always had a problem with placing an apostrophe correctly when the word already ended in –S. I would simply place the apostrophe before the –S in all cases. I found it difficult to understand why it would be marked incorrect. I can’t believe it was so difficult for me to understand. It all seems so simple now. I am eager to put my new found knowledge into action.
“Square brackets ([ ]) when you insert words or comments or make changes to words within a quotation, enclose the inserted or changed material in square brackets. Be careful to insert only words that help the quotation fit into your sentence grammatically or that offer necessary explanation. Do not insert words that substantially change the meaning.”
I’ve always known that brackets existed, but I’ve never known how to use them. Therefore, I stopped myself from using them. It suddenly makes sense. But I wonder, are brackets only used with quotes? And if it can only be used in quotes, wouldn’t it be inappropriate to change any words in a quote considering the fact that stating a quote would mean writing it the exact way it was read or spoken. Maybe, I’m misunderstanding something or over analyzing it all?
“Angle brackets (< >) use angle brackets to enclose e-mail addresses and URLs, particularly in an MLA- style works cited list.”
I honestly didn’t know that angles were used as brackets. In all my time of looking at the English language I don’t remember ever seeing angle brackets. This definition for angle brackets brings me to the conclusion that angle brackets were created for internet purposes. After reading this quote I searched the internet to confirm the accuracy of this quote and it was correct. I indeed found angle brackets enclosing e-mail addresses and URLs.
“When you omit material from a quotation, indicate the omission – the ellipsis – by using spaced dots (. . .).”
Wow, I’m dumbfounded. I’ve used ellipsis randomly. Whenever the mood would strike me, I would place multiple dots. I would especially do it when I felt I had written a significant sentence. I had never believed that ellipsis actually existed in punctuation and that there was a rule for using it. I recall seeing the ellipsis in many different texts that I’ve read through out my years of reading. Now that I think about it, I definitely misconstrued the authors meaning in a few of those texts. Now I have to reevaluate everything I’ve ever read and written using ellipsis.
“Use words for fraction: two –thirds.”
I had no idea that fractions had to be written out in words instead of numbers. I’ve always known that numbers one through ten should be written out and anything over that, numerals are required. I don’t really understand why that is like that. I don’t see why we just can’t write out the number, like in math class; then again, English isn’t math class. I guess it’s simply different standards for different subjects.