Darla’s Writer Wednesday – One Writer’s Obstinacy

I have been dragged kicking and screaming into the modern electronic era but only to a certain degree. The Oxford comma is still pertinent to me. Likewise, my habitual double spacing after each sentence continued until only recently.
I’ve finally begun accepting the one space rule behind closing punctuation. It took long enough seeing as how so much online software automatically condensed my double spaces to one. Yet I blindly and doggedly continued until just a few days ago.
The reason? It is purely selfish and simple. In fact, I lament not embracing the idea earlier.
Single spaces require a lot fewer keystrokes over the long term. Why not save my overworked thumb just a little extra effort? So, this document I’m typing officially lacks all extraneous spacing. Just don’t expect me to stop putting a space between paragraphs.
And I still decline to either discontinue, desist, or disavow my love affair with the aforementioned Oxford comma.  ~grin~

Are there any old, linger linguistic habits you maintain?

6 Replies to “Darla’s Writer Wednesday – One Writer’s Obstinacy”

  1. This might just be the journalist in me talking (extra commas take up extra column inches and ink) but I must disagree with the Oxford comma. If you like it, that is just fine. However, I refuse to believe it is in any way a necessity, like so many people seem to claim and believe. Most examples I found of the "necessity" of the Oxford comma can be fixed by rewriting or using common sense.

  2. I think it's a matter of training. The Chicago comma is more common now, as is only one space after a period. (The two spaces was from the days of using a typewriter, so anyone trained in classical typing skills will use two spaces after the period.)

    But comma style is a matter of convention, not right and wrong. It is also, however, a matter of debate.



    Thanks for taking the time to stop by, Lucas! It's awesome to "see" you.

  3. I agree that comma style is not right or wrong, I am just tired of seeing people (no one on here, of course) saying it is essentially necessary for proper understanding and then following up with an example that could be fixed with better sentence structure (the most famous one is the "I invited the strippers, JFK and Stalin" comic found online. It is amusing, but could also be fixed with restructuring the sentence, which would probably be the best way to handle the situation verbally, too, as I don't think vocal pauses will always help the understanding of a statement like that.

    Anyway, end of rant.

  4. Thanks so much, both of you, for the commentary. I knew that the single space saves room, which helped me accept it. ~grin~ I'm just stubborn about using the comma yet the lack is not bothersome at the same time (thank heavens). My real pet peeves are dangling modifiers. They are everywhere – commercials, newscasts, and otherwise well written literature. It drives me nuts. Oh, well. Such is life. Happy Thursday!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.