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  1. #61
    GemQuest Moderator Gary Wassner's Avatar
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    I find that confusing unless I am simply misunderstanding what you are saying. Does that mean that if you want to make the proper name 'Christopher' possessive you do not add 's to the end?

  2. #62
    Sorry Gemquest for the lack of clarity. Of course it is Christopher's. I was referring to proper names that ended with a sound of -s so Sophocles' and not Sophocles's. I was also incorrect, my source says the acceptability of the apostrophe with s to a proper name ending in the sound of s should be applied to those of one syllable only not to those with two or more i.e. Burns' or Burns's is okay as is Marx' or Marx's but Francis's isn't but should be Francis'. As I said though this is from a fairly old school textbook so I don't know if it still applies.

  3. #63
    New grammar q: how do you deal with punctuation and quotation marks when it's a question or exclamation?

    Example: Where is the nearest tavern? In dialogue, how does it work when there's more sentence after the quotes? "Where is the nearwest tavern," asked the mercenary.

    Or

    You killed her! -- "You killed her," exclaimed the distraught lover.

    I always want to put the question mary or exclamation point inside the quotation marks; I feel like the sentence lacks something without them. But it feels wrong. Anybody know the rule?

    Thanks,
    jfaustus

  4. #64
    mistress of pigeons Ladijen's Avatar
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    I'm not positive, but I think that it's:

    "Where is the nearest tavern?" asked the mercenary.

    and

    "You killed her!" exclaimed the distraught lover.

    On the other hand, if the dialogue ends in a period, the period becomes a comma:

    "Yes, I killed her and left her in the tavern across the street," said the sadistic dwarf.

    I could be wrong, though.

    EDIT:

    Here is a related question--where does the punctuation go when a quotated expression ends a sentence? For example, is it:

    Would you please demonstrate your spell, the one called "His Royal Sneeze?"

    I always feel like it should be ...the one called "His Royal Sneeze"? so that the quotated phrase is not separated from the quotation marks.
    Last edited by Ladijen; October 3rd, 2002 at 01:27 PM.

  5. #65
    Kiss my axe! kahnovitch's Avatar
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    Ladijen, you got it right as the whole sentence is the question rather than the quote, so the ? comes after the quotation.
    i.e. "His Royal Sneeze"?

  6. #66
    Barcelona! milamber_reborn's Avatar
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    I agree with Khanovitch. Always put in the appropriate punctuation.

    How about a questioned thought?

    eg. What have I done, he thought.

    Just used this thought technique for the first time two weeks ago, and left the question mark out, because in this case it looks very wrong included one.

    Jordan does these thoughts all the time, but I can't for the life of me remember him every including a question as a thought.

  7. #67
    Keeping The Equilibrium Erebus's Avatar
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    Well, IMO, that should be written thus:

    What have I done? he thought. There is no other way to my mind.

    All punctuation must be contained within the quotes also, if quotes are relevant:

    "What have I done?" he asked.

    "Nothing!" his friend replied.

    "Oh," he said, and then tuned away.

  8. #68
    Barcelona! milamber_reborn's Avatar
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    Erebus - Undo the italics and it looks weird. I only use italics for emphasis of the odd word in my current crop of stories.

    (unless of course you were just italicising for emphasis yourself, in which case ignore the above)

  9. #69
    Kiss my axe! kahnovitch's Avatar
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    Italics are a common way to discriminate between a character's thoughts and spoken word. I use it myself as do many other writers. Also Erebus got the ? in the right place as the question is not the entire sentence, but is contained within the thought.

  10. #70
    Keeping The Equilibrium Erebus's Avatar
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    Originally posted by milamber_reborn
    Erebus - Undo the italics and it looks weird. I only use italics for emphasis of the odd word in my current crop of stories.

    (unless of course you were just italicising for emphasis yourself, in which case ignore the above)
    It can be written either way, with or without italics, although italics is a good method for letting the reader know that the sentence is a thought rather than speech or narrative, as Kahnovitch also mentioned.

    It may look weird, but it is the correct method, IMO.

  11. #71
    Moonlighting as "David" davie's Avatar
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    Eh, hi folks. This is my first post.

    About quotes and punctuation...

    I always feel weird when I quote a single word in the middle of a sentence. I'm never sure if I should do "this," or "this". I tend to go back and forth depending on context (how long the quoted text is, how it looks, etc.), but I dislike fuzzy rules (although I realize sometimes they can't be avoided).

    Would ya'll say that this is basically the same situation as with putting a question mark inside or outside quotes at the end of a sentence?

    A related question... consider these two:
    - Did he just ask, "Where's the butter?"?
    - Did he just ask, "Where's the butter?"
    - Did he just ask, "Where's the butter"?
    I'd tend to do the latter, but I'm not sure I could back it up.

    Peace,
    -David
    User of the "does it sound right?" school of grammar and punctuation.

  12. #72
    Witch of the Woods Miriamele's Avatar
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    I could be wrong but I believe the second example is correct. I remember learning in school that punctuation is supposed to be inside the quotation marks. But maybe that's just when someone is talking, like in a story. In this case the speaker of the sentence isn't the same person who asked "where's the butter" so I'm not totally sure. Plus, both speakers are asking questions, so it's possible that you could use two question marks. But if I had to guess I would still say the second.

    If you're going to quote only a single word in a sentence maybe you can use 'single' quotation marks. But, I really don't know what I'm talking about.

    This is a difficult example, I wonder if anyone actually knows the answer.

  13. #73
    Keeping The Equilibrium Erebus's Avatar
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    Well, I would use example 3 in this instance.

  14. #74
    Kiss my axe! kahnovitch's Avatar
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    I'd also use 3. don't know why, it just looks right.

  15. #75
    The Doctor... Sammie's Avatar
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    I'd be at a loss, so i would write:

    Did he just ask where the butter was?

    (ie - if in doubt, cheat )

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