Run-Ons and Fragments
On your own sheet of paper, identify each sentence as a fragment, a run-on, or correct (no error). Then rewrite the paragraph by correcting the sentence fragments and run-ons.
My favorite book is Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, he was born in 1894 and died in 1963 ________. Written in 1931 ________. A futuristic society where humans are born out of test tubes and kept in rigid social classes ________. This may not seem like a humorous premise for a novel, but Huxley uses satire, which is a type of humor that is used to make a serious point ________. The humans in Brave New World learn through sleep teaching, Huxley calls this “hypnopedia” ________. Everyone is kept “happy” in the brave new world by taking a pill called soma, there is one character named John the Savage who does not take soma ________. because he comes from a different part of the world where there is no technology, and he believes in natural ways of living ________. It turns out that John has a big problem with the brave new world and how people live there ________. Will he be able to survive living there, well you will have to read the novel to find out ________. Brave New World is considered a classic in English literature, it is one of the best novels I have ever read ________.
Commas and Other Punctuation
Each sentence contains a punctuation error. On your own sheet of paper, correct each sentence by adding the correct punctuation. The headings will let you know which type of punctuation mistakes to look for. If the sentence does not need corrections, write OK.
a. The wedding will be July 13 2012.
b. The date by the way is the anniversary of the day that they met.
c. The groom the bride and their parents are all planning the event.
d. Actually all of their friends and relatives are involved in the planning.
e. The bride is a baker so she will be making the wedding cake herself.
f. The photography the catering and the music will all be done by friends.
a. Some people spend a lot of money hiring people for wedding services they are lucky to have such talented friends.
b. The flowers will be either roses, daisies, and snapdragons orchids, tulips, and irises or peonies and lilies.
Colons and Quotation Marks
a. There will be three colors for the wedding: white, black, and gold.
b. They’ve finally narrowed down the dinner choices salmon, steak, and a vegan stew.
c. Their wedding invitations contained the following quote from the Roman poet Ovid If you want to be loved, be lovable
d. The invitations said that the wedding would be “outdoor casual.”
e. “What exactly does ‘outdoor casual’ mean?” I asked the bride.
f. She told me to dress comfortably and wear shoes that do not sink into the ground.
a. On the day of the wedding, the bride looked more beautiful than ever and I’ve known her for fifteen years.
b. All the details were perfect in my opinion.
a. Everyone danced at the wedding except my mother.
b. It was to be expected she just had hip surgery.
a. The groom danced with his new mother in law.
b. It was a spectacular, fun filled day for everyone.
Identifying and Correcting Punctuation Errors
Each sentence contains a punctuation error. On your own sheet of paper, correct each sentence by adding commas, semicolons, colons, apostrophes, parentheses, hyphens, and dashes as needed.
a. My mothers garden is full of beautiful flowers.
b. She has carefully planted several species of roses peonies and irises.
c. She is especially proud of her thirty year old Japanese maple tree.
d. I am especially proud of the sunflowers I planted them!
e. You should see the birds that are attracted to the garden hummingbirds, finches, robins, and sparrows.
f. I like to watch the hummingbirds they are my favorite.
g. We spend a lot of time in the garden planting weeding and just enjoying the view.
h. Each flower has its own personality some seem shy and others seem bold.
i. Arent gardens wonderful?
j. You should come visit sometime Do you like to garden?
The following paragraph contains errors in punctuation. On your own sheet of paper, correct the paragraph by adding commas, semicolons, colons, apostrophes, parentheses, hyphens, and dashes as needed. There may be more than one way to correct the paragraph.
May 18 2011
Dear Hiring Manager
Allow me to introduce myself in my previous position I was known as the King of Sales. I hope to earn the same title within your company. My name is Frances Fortune. I have thirteen years experience in corporate sales and account management. I have been the top rated seller for two years in a row in my previous position. Clients recognize me as dependable honest and resourceful. I have a strong work ethic and great interpersonal skills. I excel at goal setting and time management. However you don’t have to take my word for it I will be happy to provide personal and professional references upon request. Youre welcome to contact my previous employer to inquire about my work performance. I look forward to speaking with you in person in the near future.
Read the following paragraph. Edit by adding apostrophes, parentheses, dashes, and hyphens where needed. There may be more than one correct way to edit some sentences. Consider how the punctuation you choose affects the meaning of the sentence. Then compare your edits with a partner.
I was a little nervous about the interview it was my first in years. I had to borrow my roommates suit, but it fit me well. A few days ago, I started to research the companys history and mission. I felt like I was well qualified for the job. When I arrived, I shook hands with the interviewer she had a strong grip! It nearly caught me off guard, but I did my best to smile and relax. I was a little distracted by all the books in the womans office she must have had a hundred books in that tiny room. However, I think my responses to her questions were good. Ill send her an e-mail to thank her for her time. Hopefully shell call me soon about the position.
Review some of the recent or current assignments you have completed for school or work. Look through recent business and personal e-mails. Does your work contain any errors in punctuation? Correct the errors and compile a list of the types of errors you are correcting (commas, semicolons, colons, apostrophes, quotation marks, parentheses, dashes, hyphens, etc.). Use this list as a reference for the types of punctuation marks that you should review and practice.
If you do not find many errors—great! You can still look for ways to add interest to your writing by using dashes, semicolons, colons, and parentheses to create a variety of sentence lengths and structures.
Contributors and Attributions
CC LICENSED CONTENT, SHARED PREVIOUSLY:
- Adapted from Writing for Success. Provided by: The Saylor Foundation. License: CC-NC-SA 3.0.
- Adapted from College ESL Writers: Applied Grammar and Composing Strategies for Success. Authored by: Barbara Hall and Elizabeth Wallace. Provided by: GALILEO Open Learning Materials. License: CC BY-NC-SA (3.0): Attribution.
This page most recently updated on June 8, 2020.