A FEW PROPER USES OF
By Joyce Shaughnessy, Certified Copy Editor
Punctuation can be confusing to the best of writers because there are many different rules we are required to follow. Some of the more common ones involve clauses. An independent clause has both a subject and a verb. So what happens when you write a sentence containing two independent clauses?
A semicolon separates two independent clauses in the same sentence. This is the only time a semicolon may be used. A semicolon is never used to end a sentence or to separate two clauses in which one is not a complete sentence.
We are going to eat dinner; we are going to eat at the table.
A comma separates two independent clauses and a conjunction.
We are going to eat dinner, and we are going to eat at the table.
Question marks end sentences that are formed as questions or direct statements that imply a question; they may be used as internal or terminal punctuation.
Is the water cold?
Is he right? or am I just plain stupid?
Why? exactly why is this habit so harmful?
Exclamation marks or points are used as the name implies – for emphasis, especially when using interjections, in the imperative mood, or it may even be used to end a sentence that is structured like a question.
Whew! did that hurt!
Stop that nonsense at once!
Do I love fudge!
Colons are used to introduce something to follow.
I am writing a piece which contains punctuation of: clauses, question marks, exclamation
points, colons, and semicolons.
Hyphens are used to break words to prevent an unusually long blank space at the end of a line.
Never hyphenate the first letter of the first two letters of a word.
Never hyphenate a proper noun (unless it is a compound surname).
Never hyphenate the last word on a page.
Hyphens may be used to indicate a compound adjective, such as blue-green, or when an adjective noun combination modifies a noun.
Examples are: single-word answer or a five-year plan.
Hyphens can join two nouns, such as: tractor-trailer, light-year. In this case, always consult your dictionary to see if the words should be hyphenated.
There are times when a whole phrase may occur as an adjective, in which the whole expression must take hyphens (such as the expression “up-to-date.”
He was a twenty-five-year-old executive.
We have an up-and-coming enterprise here.
Remember that the previous phrases are only hyphenated when they are used as adjectives.
These are just a few examples of punctuation use, but they are important to remember. Your work will be cleaner and more presentable. Next month, we will discuss the proper use of commas and quotation marks.
Joyce, life would have been so much easier if I had been in your English class in school, but happiness is being able to refer to your column when I need you the most. Peter
I never cease to be amazed at the complexity of our ancient world,
came to be, the origin of its inhabitants, the identity and use of the objects
and artifacts left behind, and the insecurity of our best scientists to
understand how we came to be, or, where we originated. There is a great
deal of archeological evidence that the history of life on earth might be different than what current geological and anthropological evidence tells
In my never-ending search for truths, I am amazed at the number of unexplained objects found in the water, in rocks, under the soils around the world.
Take for example the Grooved Spheres of South Africa. These
little guys measure about 1", are etched with parallel groves around the
equator, with specks of white throughout. A second set consists of a solid bluish metal, hollowed out, and filled with a spongy white substance. These little rocks are pre-Cambrian, dated to about 2.8 billion year ago.
The big question is who made them and why were they made; the
answer remains unknown. Another phenomenon coming to me are called the Dropa Stones of China. Hundreds of stone disks were found measuring about 9" in diameter. Each stone has a circle cut in the center and is etched
with spiral grooves like a phonograph record. These stones are said
to be about 12 thousand years old. On close examination, the grooves
are actually composed of tiny hieroglyphics that tell an incredible story
of space ships from some distant world that crash landed in the mountains,
said to be piloted by people who called themselves the Dropa; the remains
of whose descendants were found in the caves. Another interesting finding is called the Bagdad Battery, found in a Parthian village dating back to early times. The main container was a clay vessel with a copper cylinder held in place by asphalt, and inside of that, an oxidized iron rod. If filled with acid or alkaline liquid, this conglomeration could produce an electrical charge for electroplating objects with gold - this, 1800 years before the modern battery came into being.
Lastly, I became fascinated with the Ancient Model Aircraft, one found in Egypt and one in Central America, These objects look amazingly like modern day aircraft. One at Saqquara Egypt, discovered in 1898, is made of wood with a fuselage, wings and tail. It was actually able to glide. Another found in Central America, made of gold, and estimated to be 1000 years old, could be mistaken for a modern day delta-wing aircraft or a space shuttle featuring what looks like a pilot's seat.There are just a few of the countless objects similar to these that have been discovered, examined, analyzed, but unidentified as to their origin. Some of them predate the time man was said to have begun life on earth, but then, how could that be. How could things have been made before man arrived? There is much to learn, and so little evidence to tell the true story of these findings, but science carries on. Who knows when someone with a pick or shovel, or with a scoop from the undersea will find something that will conclusively tell the story of who we are and where we came from. I know I will keep searching for truths, and hope you will too.
Vinita Singh 's column~
A Confident and Happy Spirit.
I’ve realized we have to have a balance in our minds, body and soul. All we need to feel good is lots of laughter. Laughing too much or being silly is not a bad thing. It not only releases our tension in the brain, it also works some abs. Its ok, we need to let our emotions out; even if we are nervous, we laugh out loud. Off course, but after words we really feel all the tension gone.
Too much of something is never good. I’ve heard that told by others. On the flip side if you are trying to succeed at something; doing it over a thousand times is not a bad thing. What about rejection; a thousand rejections only make you stronger is what I say. When you have fumbled a thousand times, messed up on auditions, messed up in your writing - there is nothing wrong with that. It not only makes you stronger; it makes you be able to get your nervousness out, You get used to making a fool out of yourself. Then you question, am I making a fool out of myself or am I just able to be more outgoing? Yes that’s it when you have messed up; not only is your confidence level higher, but you’ve become more confidant. It’s okay to mess up. It’s okay to not be perfect. It’s what makes us grow. We are stronger. There is another word for stronger and confidant which is solid. That’s it we are solid after several rejections. To have a happy spirit, we need to not just do what we love but free our mind and be at peace. Dance if we feel like it. Draw or color if we want. Write to get our emotions out. It’s not perfect - its something that calms us. When we are calm, we focus. When we focus, our performance is better.
Sleep is another part of a happy Spirit. I have felt when I get enough rest, I wake up and I’m focused. When I am focused not only do I perform better, I also do a better job. That is what makes a confidant and happy spirit.
[email protected] Singh Jan 5, 2017
Vinita, your works are always uplifting and educational. Peter
Author Charles Ray's Words
Peter & Pattimari write a new book for 2017.
The bombing of an American Embassy was no terrorist act. It was an inside job, and it took out the wrong people. Kelly was told her husband, Ancil, was killed in this bombing, yet she continues to hear his voice in her head that he is alive. A reporter, Aimee, helps Kelly find out if he is dead or alive. Revenge was swift and sweet.
Marty’s wife disappears which haunts him when he and his sister, Nan, continue to see a woman who looks like Marty’s wife, but obviously isn’t. Nan’s husband was killed which turned both of their lives upside down. When Nan’s husband, a businessman, was invaded in his own business by armed hooded, terrorist; this sets off a chain reaction of motion with a force of endless energy seeking a quick resolution. Marty and Nan move in together to find answers to their painful life.
This book was a lot of fun writing. Peter and I want to get back to our Wizard series, so look for it in a few months.
Pattimari and I, as co-writers and explorers of fun and fascinating topics on which to write and investigate had our minds click together a while back while visiting one of many bookstores we frequent. One or the other espied a book discussing the possibility that UFO’s and extra- terrestrials frequented our planet thousands of years ago, and perhaps stuck around to see the results of their work. Well, show us a book on myths, fables, wizards and such, and off we go. With this topic of ET’s, however, the more we read, the more we read, and we were gripped with the fascination that there might be more to the theories about visitations from people or creatures from other worlds. Now what writer could resist the idea that suggests we are not alone, whether reality, fiction, pseudoscience, mythology or what, once the seed is planted, and the mind goes into that strange world of creative thought without thinking, a new idea or story is created.
As we poked our heads into these texts, some written as science, some as what if books, we adopted the What If theory of our recent studies and writings. By using the What If theory, it leaves the door open to those who automatically oppose any idea that there could possibly be any other creatures in the vastness of space to those who, upon investigating certain ancient texts, cave writings, documents, early theorists and speculators, that the subject demands a more thorough investigation. Can a creative writer automatically oppose an idea about anything? Not in this family! We are hooked. During our past and now current investigations, we have looked at ancient sites throughout Egypt, and then on to India, coursing in and around Tibet and, who could resist China? Whether by coincidence or What If, it is amazing to discover very ancient sites suggesting such advanced mathematics and engineering, that what was built in those and many other areas we discovered around the globe, it was difficult for us to dismiss them as not possibly having any relationships with one another. Is it possible that a civilization could construct monuments, buildings, carvings of odd looking creatures in one location only to find similar likenesses five ro ten thousand miles away in another civilization without at least having some question about the similarities? Well, not in our minds. We have ventured on from China to Japan, Alaska, North America and Mexico, then on to Peru, ventured around the Bermuda Triangle and its strangeness, to Mexico’s Zone of Silence, and on and on. At each location we have made discoveries and then attached our speculations about them either for the sake of a good exciting novel, or, as a research project forcing us into a deeper study on a more scientific and religious basis. Whatever we present, because we are not advanced researchers on this subject, it will be with our assigned title What If. If what we present sparks some interest for you to delve deeper, then that’s good. If it strikes you as complete fantasy, then that might make for a great fantasy novel. Whatever happens as you think of what is to follow, please do so with an open mind and know that we are not out to convince anyone that we want you to believe that we are “not alone” in this vastness of space comprising our complex outer world. It is difficult enough to think about our neighboring planets than to wander out billions of light years into the vastness of space and come to any sane conclusions.
When you hear the term Light Year, what comes to mind? To travel such a short distance, compared to the many light years separating one universe from another, one would have to travel at 186 thousand miles per second, for one year. So get out your calculator and compute the distance separating some far out places in our universe; happy math.______________________________________________________________________________________
The rush of time
Hello and welcome. It’s only coming up to the second month of the year and already I feel overwhelmed. In a good way, but nonetheless overwhelmed by the amount that is on my list of things to do – like to do right now. Start this, complete that, all major or part of major projects. Unfortunately, coupled with compromised energy all of this is looming as a recipe for disaster.
Do you also feel the rush of time? Overwhelmed? Exhausted just ‘thinking about what you need to and want to do?
What if you are already expending heaps of energy just staying afloat, like a duck which is serene on the surface and paddling furiously under the water? Or you seem submerged by the weight of your list? Perhaps you feel that you are in the ‘early days’ of being overwhelmed and concerned about how to cope. The ‘early days’ is the best time to take stock and prioritise. But, what if the ‘early days’ were a long time ago? That’s okay, today is earlier than tomorrow, earlier than next week, next month!
Therefore, to get started with re-prioritising you might like to ask yourself “what is important for me? What is important for others?” Sort out what needs your attention separately, and what requires teamwork input, a collaborative approach. Where do your actions fit into another’s schedule, another person’s projects? Are they, the other person’s schedule or your input, a vital component? Keep in mind that another person’s agenda is not necessarily yours, nor is it mindful of what else you have to do and your priorities. Remembering this helps minimise the emotional impact on you and may elevate your ability to take on the practical component. Communication is important especially when burn-out is imminent from chronic overwhelming, the feeling of ‘everything’ is out of your control. Productivity decreases and if burn-out happens, then nothing gets done.
No-one can tell you how to re-order your priorities into something workable – that would be from their perspective. The good news is that by re-prioritising you come back to being in control of your life. You may wish to check items on your list don’t become urgent with an artificial short deadline by noting what keeps getting moved to or remains at bottom of your list. This is especially for items you’re not keen on or because they need extra attention. Know that tackling these items is going to take extra energy so in order to create balance put them near something on your list which consumes less time, mental, emotional or physical energies.
Oh, and don’t forget to schedule in some ‘spontaneous’ enjoyment time. This might sound odd but you allocate time for what you need to do, why not for things you like to do? Therefore, schedule then focus on enjoying the ‘spontaneous’ action and what you want to do for that period of time – remembering the 3rd principle from last month ‘energy flows where attention goes.’ Soon you won’t need to write it into your schedule as a new habit forms and time to enjoy becomes a vital part of your day.
Well I’m off to reprioritise my list – again. So, until next month have fun in your allocated time and I look forward to hearing from you about this and anything else you’d like to share with me, to share with all of you.
Vee Bee's Say~
There are times when I don't feel like putting on my makeup or dressing up, so what I do instead is simply apply oil to my face to give it a rest. I enjoy dressing in comfortable clothes on those days. To simply accept yourself is important.
Dr. Willie White's Religious Thoughts
What is Forgiveness? Forgiveness is the noun forms of the verb forgive, which is to cease to resent, pardon, and remit (debt) (OXFORD Dictionary). According to the American Heritage Children Dictionary, it states that forgiveness is the act of forgiving or condition of being forgiven. A condition that requires forgiveness is hatred; however, the act of love covers all hatred and sins (Proverbs 10:12 paraphrased).
The power of love was demonstrated so gracefully by God the Father that He gave His only Son Jesus Christ to save the world from sin (John 3:16). Jesus forgave all of us for our sins when He died on the cross. Just as Jesus forgave us for our sins we are to forgive others. Why because in doing so we emulate Christ and His love.
The act of forgiving depicts the heart of the forgiver in that the person realizes that he or she has been forgiven at some time or another. As we are willing to forgive others, then they too are willing to forgive us. If we search the scriptures on forgiving, we will find a plethora of scriptures providing examples of acts of forgiveness.
If we questioned how often we should forgive our brother, Jesus made it very plain in Luke 17:3-4 we should forgive our brothers seven times in a day, which is as often as needed. How can we allow our brother to ask us for forgiveness and we do not forgive him. When we ask our Heavenly Father for forgiveness, our Father forgives us. Is not our brother so deserving of our forgiveness? Yes. If we are to be forgiven, we must first forgive others.
When we forgive others we feel a relief from the yoke of anger and burden which prevents us from forgiving others has been broken. Total forgiveness means that our anger is gone forever. When we totally forgive others it shows the depth of our love, grace and mercy which is our continued emulation of God.
Let me close with this question, why am I writing about forgiveness? First, it was suggested; second, I agreed that this was a timely topic seeing that there is so much hurt, anger, mistrust and frustration in today's society. Third, I felt moved that if we all could just find a common ground-forgiveness, then we will begin to heal, trust, love and come together as one-the United States of America.
by John B. Rosenman
A funny thing happened the other day. I was navigating Facebook as I often do, and I noticed that Morgan Freeman had just died. I was both surprised and saddened by this news. I always liked Morgan Freeman. He was a good actor, and when he spoke, so did God if you know what I mean. Now a car accident had claimed his life.
It was a shock but I continued on, only to see the next day that Brad Pitt had also bit the dust. Maybe it was contagious.
Fake news has always been around, but lately it’s become more common. In another “news” account, Morgan Freeman is not only dead, he’s been cloned. Wait, hold the presses, there’s even more. Morgan Freeman just married his step-granddaughter!
The motivation behind false reporting and manufactured stories can be almost anything. It can range from a political or social agenda to a simple desire to have fun and get a rise out of people. Whatever the case, it is important for Us, the People, to be skeptical and to look before we leap into acceptance. Credulity can be costly, whether to ourselves or others. Sometimes the truth can actually be hidden or difficult to see, or even ugly and unpleasant. Just ask anyone who has been unjustly sentenced to prison.
As I see it, there are two main reasons why there has recently been an epidemic of fake news.
1. Social media and the internet. Facebook, to mention just one platform, often has sublime and beautiful posts such as lovely photographs of nature and animals of different species living in mutual harmony and support. Unfortunately, it also offers a lot that is ugly and obscene, as well as irresistible to the gullible. Above all, anyone who can log on can often get away with doing anything they want, things which they wouldn’t dare do in public. Faceless trolls and liars disseminate their mischief with impunity. If someone reports them and the site takes them off, they soon crop up elsewhere. The internet in particular is hard to resist. We all know people who have taken countless selfies from all conceivable angles. Why? Because they want friends and folks to react positively. And so do the frauds and pranksters who post fake news.
2. We’ve lost respect for research, scholarship, and critical thinking. This is at least partly related to #1. Before I retired as an English professor, I noticed that more and more of my students’ research papers were plagiarized from online sources. These articles were so quick and easy to find that some students didn’t even bother to go to the library. Why spend so much time and effort trudging all that way to dig through the stacks? Instead, they sat on their butts and cut and pasted whole sections of articles directly into their papers. Easy-peasy! I’m afraid that this casual, lazy attitude toward one’s sources has contributed to fake news. Sometimes, indeed, the offenders may even have difficulty distinguishing truth from falsehood. In the end, the truth is what they think it is.
Perhaps you can think of other factors that contribute to fake news. The important thing is to remain skeptical and to be on guard for it. Otherwise we run the risk of being seduced by falsehood and paying a terrible price.
* * *
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Note from Peter: John, great story, and nothing but the truth. I am overwhelmed by the amount of Fake News allowed to circulate on the net. It's confusing enough as it is to try to believe the good stuff. Having to waste time reading the junk is very discouraging. Perhaps all those Fakes out there are really fantasy writers. Do you think we should invite them to join the magazine and enlighten us with their brilliance? Peter