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Your Mission:. To Study the Colon To Study the Dash To Study the Hyphen To Study Brackets. colon :. Rule 1: Introduce a List. Example: Bring the following : forks, knives, and spoons. colon :. Rule 2: Introduce a Second Main Clause Which Explains the First. Example:

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Your mission
Your Mission:

  • To Study the Colon

  • To Study the Dash

  • To Study the Hyphen

  • To Study Brackets


Colon
colon :

  • Rule 1: Introduce a List.

  • Example:

    • Bring the following: forks, knives, and spoons.


Colon1
colon :

  • Rule 2: Introduce a Second Main Clause Which Explains the First.

  • Example:

    • Her excuse is valid: she does not have transportation.


Colon2
colon :

  • Rule 3: Emphasize a Following Appositive.

  • Example:

    • He had only one motive: love.


Dash --

  • Rule 1: Set Off a Parenthetical (information in between) Element.

  • Example:

    • He told her—believe it or not—to leave.


Dash --

  • Rule 2: Emphasize an Appositive.

  • Example:

    • English, history, and science—all are required.


Hyphen
Hyphen -

  • Rule 1: Join Compound Words Functioning as a Single Unit.

  • Example:

    • May I introduce my mother-in-law?

    • Donny has a better-late-than-never disposition.

      NOTE: The hyphen is shorter than the dash.


Hyphen1
Hyphen -

  • Rule 2: Join Fractions and Compound Numbers from 21 to 99.

  • Example:

    • He gave me two-thirds of his pay check.

    • Nathan is twenty-one years old today.


Hyphen2
Hyphen -

  • Rule 3: Use with Prefixes Ex- and Self-.

  • Example:

    • Mr. McCaslin is the ex-president of the company.

    • Self-denial builds character.


Brackets
Brackets [ ]

  • YOU HAVE NO TIME in timed writing to copy unnecessary words, so leave them out!

  • Use a bracket […] to show your deletions.


  • "Rome had several mad emperors. [Nero] was the maddest of them all. . . . Legend has it . . . he played his harp while the city went up in flames."

  • The 4th dot after “all” is a period for the end of the sentence.

  • DO NOT leave out a phrase like “legend has it,” because that would change the author’s meaning!


    • "Rome had several mad emperors. [Nero] was the maddest of them all. . . . Legend has it . . . he played his harp [some say he fiddled] while the city went up in flames.“

    • Notice the brackets to replace “he” with the name. Notice it’s not “He [Nero] was…”

    • Notice the brackets to make an inserted comment after “harp.” Only do that if it’s really necessary and will save you time later.


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