The difference punctuation makes

We all know that punctuation matters. What’s that old story? Grammar and punctuation are the difference between:

“Let’s eat Grandpa!”


“Let’s eat, Grandpa!”

Sometimes, all it takes is a paragraph mark.

I wrote a poem some time ago about a man and a boat. An opportunity came up recently to submit it, so I took it out, dusted it off and had another look at it. It was a good poem, had good parts. But there was a line missing, somehow, in the flow of it, the metre of it.

I sent it on to C and asked – “do you have any ideas?”

She must have been in Australia at the time, because this was all done via email.

She simply moved three words from the end of one line into a new line, added a fullstop and bam – it was done. Astonishing. But it worked. It didn’t need more words, just more punctuation.

The poem didn’t win, but it was shortlisted.

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Nat Newman

Nat Newman is an award-winning writer of short stories, content, podcasts, feature articles, drunk text messages and, soon, a novella.


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