Tuesday, December 10, 2013


I think this travel brochure meant to offer a quiet getaway... I'm not sure what a "get-a-way" is.

And, while we're at it!

My students know I have a prejudice against exclamation marks in all but the rarest of cases. The Excessive Exclamation!! blog (in my blogroll at right) provides an excellent explanation:

The exclamation point is a punctuation mark usually used after an interjection or exclamation to indicate strong feelings or high volume (shouting), and often marks the end of a sentence. Example, "Watch Out!" A sentence ending in an exclamation mark is an actual exclamation ("Wow!", "Boo!"), the imperative mood ("Stop!"), or intended to be astonishing or show astonishment ("They were the footprints of a gigantic hound!). Overly frequent use of the exclamation mark is generally considered poor writing, for it distracts the reader and reduces the mark's meaning. And, as F. Scott Fitzgerald once said, "An exclamation point is like laughing at your own jokes."

The content of your writing should generate excitement, not your punctuation; writing that attempts to generate excitement through exclamation points seems unpolished (and less credible than it might otherwise be).

Whenever you're tempted to use an exclamation point in professional writing, challenge yourself to use the message to excite the reader. That'll have more impact.

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