I’m trying to convince my sister to start blogging.
She thinks she has nothing to say, but I know she has strong opinions on a lot of things (runs in the family I guess !). I also respect her opinions and think that she would be a great writer.
She is also a teacher (secondary school) and self-professed “apostrophe nazi”, and as such she has threatened to correct my writings. I can be rather pernickety about punctuation too – although I also suffer from what I call computer programmer punctuation, which is not strictly correct from an english language point of view.
I’m mostly referring to the use of quotes – programmers will write a “quoted phrase”, and then follow with a comma OUTSIDE the quotes. This is to isolate the quoted string, and not contaminate it with extraneous punctuation. Whereas, the correct punctuation is to have the comma inside the quotation marks for a “quoted phrase,” just like this.
Other example would be the use of question marks with quotes. The correct rule is; where there is a question both inside and outside the quotes, then you only include one question mark inside the quotes: Did I write, “is this a quoted phrase ?”
Of course the programmer in me is strongly tempted to balance my writing and include a second question mark, one for each question. Also, things in my example like putting the question mark inside the quotes, and then not finishing with a full stop just seems wrong – you need to terminate your line correctly.
So my punctuation tends to be a little inconsitent, but I have always been fond of apostrophes, so I am quite happy for my sister-the-teacher to be correcting my misuse of the apostrophe.