You are either for it, against it, or don’t care about it—the serial comma, also known as the Oxford comma.
I’m of the belief that you should use it, and you should always use it.
Be consistent. While it is acceptable to forego the serial comma in simple sentences (especially to save type space) where there is no confusion if it is left out…
Three ice cream flavors are strawberry, vanilla and chocolate.
I still use it. To me, if you’re going to have a rule, follow it and don’t be willy-nilly.
Three ice cream flavors are strawberry, vanilla, and chocolate.
Be clear. If a client can not clearly explain to me why they have left a comma out of a listing sentence, I will insist on its use.
Three ice cream flavors are strawberry with hazelnut, vanilla and chocolate.
The three flavors are clearly shown with the serial comma.
Three ice cream flavors are strawberry with hazelnut, vanilla, and chocolate.
(1: strawberry with hazelnut, 2: vanilla, 3: chocolate = three flavors!)
Be confident. Without the serial comma, listing things can become confusing. What goes together? What should be separated?
Sheila loves the beach beach balls and Dick.
WHAT?!?! Balls and stuff all over the place.
Sheila loves the beach, beach balls and Dick.
Not much better. Why does the beach stand alone, while balls and Dick are joined?
Sheila loves the beach, beach balls, and Dick.
♥ , , & .
Yay! With the Oxford comma, it all makes sense!
15 thoughts on “Oxford comma!”
I’m with you on this one hundred percent.
Whoo hoo! Oxford comma for life!
I use it. Great discussion.
Thank you for joining!
I like the Oxford comma, I agree it increases clarity. However, most of the people I end up writing with remove it. The nerve!
Thanks for swinging by my blog today. I’m looking forward to more editing tips.
Liz at Bead Contagion
I was happy to find your blog. So beautiful.
We Oxford comma users must stick together!
Hooray for the Oxford comma. That’s the way I learned it, and I’m keeping it.
Visiting other A to Zers. Hope you’ll visit back. My theme is quirky quotes. http://www.widowsphere.blogspot.com
I certainly will! Happy A to Z!
My problem is remembering to be consistent. (By the way, I found the light green on beige totally unreadable. Sue Ann Bowling
Blogging from A to Z April Challenge
Oh no! Sometimes computer screens show colors differently. And, of course, everyone’s eyes are different. But thank you for commenting!
I love this one! I recently re-learned it and have been using it consistently (I think). Thanks for sharing your editing insights. I will be back.
Wonderful! You’re welcome, and thank you for stopping by!
Green is now dark! 😉
oh dear I think I”m one of the inconsistent users. Not using commas is giggle worthy though as you pointed out
It’s never too late!
Glad you had a giggle. 😀