I was recently editing a chapter book, and I needed one character to interrupt another. I knew I should use a dash, but which one? Below is a summary of what each type of dash does. I threw in the hyphen for good measure.
- Compound nouns, verbs, and adjectives
- Date, time, and number ranges
- Shows conflict or connection between two things or ideas
- Instead of commas, parentheses, or colons (Em dashes are more emphatic and less formal than the other forms of punctuation.)
- Two em dashes replace missing or omitted letters or words
For a more comprehensive list of uses and examples of how each type of punctuation is used, read the articles below. (They are the ones I found most helpful when deciding which form of punctuation to use.)
“Hyphens, En Dashes, Em Dashes” by The Chicago Manual of Style Online
“Hyphen” by The Punctuation Guide
“En dash” by The Punctuation Guide
“Em dash” by The Punctuation Guide
If you’re like me, you were taught growing up that you should never end a sentence with a preposition. Maybe you’ve also found yourself in a situation where you tried really hard to re-write a sentence so that it did not end with a dreaded preposition, but the result sounded weird and was barely comprehendible. Can anyone relate?
Well, you might be shocked to learn that you may end a sentence with a preposition. (I hear the gasps of disbelief and outraged cries from here.) Before you decide I’ve lost my mind, and all sense of grammar, please check out the articles below.
Prepositions, Ending a Sentence With by Merriam-Webster.com
Ending Sentences with Prepositions by OxfordDictionaries.com
Can you end a sentence with a preposition? by Catherine Soanes (Oxford Dictionaries blog)
Ending a Sentence with a Preposition: Is it ever OK to end a sentence with a preposition? by Mignon Fogarty (Grammar Girl)
Warning, many people still believe that a sentence should not end with a preposition. Use wisdom when applying your newfound freedom.