The Tag Clause

Margie Wakeman Wells The Comma, The Semicolon Leave a Comment

A tag clause turns a statement into a question. …You were there by 10:00, weren’t you? …You were there by 10:00; is that right? …You were there by 10:00, weren’t you, to see your brother? …You were there by 10:00 — is that right? — to see your brother? There are two kinds of tag clauses. The one that depends …

Margie Wakeman Wells Essential versus Nonessential, MWW Blog, Phrases, Sentence Structure, The Comma, The Semicolon Leave a Comment

Just a reminder: Sentence Structure, a study of clauses and phrases, begins this Saturday, August 10, at 8:30 A.M. PDT. Go to for details and registration. And, yes, I had a MAJOR grammar mistake in my last post!!! …I give this class ONLY once a year. The placement of “only” matters!!!! Happy punctuating! Margie

“Margie Rules” — The Subscription

Margie Wakeman Wells The Comma, The Dash, The Semicolon Leave a Comment

I have an excellent example this morning of what we do in Margie Rules. This is my $10-a-month subscription program. We offer a 10 percent discount on all my books and seminars; a live monthly session online for questions and discussion of English topics; and a dedicated FB page, where I answer questions and explain the grammar/punctuation that applies to …

“That Is…” and Others

Margie Wakeman Wells The Colon, The Comma, The Dash, The Semicolon 2 Comments

This is an abbreviated version of what is in my book on these eight parentheticals. PARENTHETICAL TO INTRODUCE AN APPOSITIVE Sometimes, when a person wants to explain, reiterate, rename, or restate something — that is, he wants to use an appositive — he uses a parenthetical before the appositive. These are the expressions most commonly used as parentheticals before an …

More on the Word “So” — Even If We Don’t Even Want to Go There Again

Margie Wakeman Wells General, The Period, The Semicolon, Uncategorized Leave a Comment

Facebook had a couple of interesting questions/examples on “so.” SO I thought it would be good to take a look at them. This is my answer to the questions about the word “so” in the FB sentence below. …If, after a question has been posed to you, you have any question relating to what is being inquired about, please tell …

A Different Meaning for the Period or Semicolon Before “Is That Correct?”

Margie Wakeman Wells The Period, The Semicolon 3 Comments

Deciding to use a period versus a semicolon before “Is that correct?” and expecting your reader to distinguish that they mean something different is an exercise in extreme subtlety. This distinction has been pushed around out there for a long time. …You testified that he arrived at 9:00; is that correct? — meaning is it correct that you testified to this?  …You testified that he …