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Hey, You: Explain Colon Usage

Hey, You: Explain Colon Usage

By Miss Marm

Colons do several things. They're a highly useful little marks of punctuation.

Colons indicate that you're about to elaborate.
Rachel's plan was simple: camp out for as long as it took.

Colons introduce lists.
She brought the following items: a sleeping bag, a homemade sign, Tropical Twist gum, a Team Jetpack t-shirt, and her friend Amy.

Be careful: don't use colons to introduce lists that have already been introduced by verbs or prepositions.
NO: Side effects included: cold hands, a pounding headache, and a sore butt.
YES: Side effects included cold hands, a pounding headache, and a sore butt.

Colons signal definitions.
Twihard: A Twilight fan willing to lose hours of sleep and risk a sore butt in the pursuit of New Moon tickets.

Colons introduce commands.
You, in the Team Edward t-shirt: tell me exactly what your problem is. Do you like possessive control freaks?

Hey, you: Got a question for me? Email missmarm@sparknotes.com.

Topics: twilight, new moon, ultimate style, the rules, colons
 

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