How To Use Punctuation Like A Pro

Shani Raja
A free video tutorial from Shani Raja
Ex-Wall Street Journal editor
4.5 instructor rating • 8 courses • 407,771 students

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Punctuation Mastery

A Non-Technical Guide To Using Punctuation With Style

02:23:52 of on-demand video • Updated September 2020

  • Learn how to apply punctuation stylishly
  • Write with more confidence and flair
  • Spruce up your reports, essays, resumes, books, blogs and articles
English Hi guys, and welcome to my new course on punctuation. It's all about how to use punctuation really really effectively now are you one of these people who really struggles knowing where to place your commas, where to put semicolons, when to use dashes, and hyphens well if that's you then this course is going to clear up all that for you. You might on the other hand be somebody who knows how to use punctuation in a very basic sense because you learned that at school or college but basically you are not aware of how to use punctuation with a certain amount of flair and style and if that's you, this course is also going to help you now I am Shani Raja for those of you who haven't taken any of my other courses. I'm a veteran journalist, I've been working for some of the world's biggest news organizations like the Wall Street Journal, the Financial Times The Economist and Bloomberg News. So I have been in a journalistic environment where where the top editors and writers on the in these places really know how to use punctuation really really effectively. I'm going to teach you their secrets basically. Now I've noticed a lot of people aren't that confident when it comes to using punctuation. When you read a blog posts when you look at reports, or cover letters that people have written, marketing copy that they do, I notice a lot that there is a lot of ill use punctuation and it really takes away from the authority of that piece of writing. I don't want you to be that person so when you learn how to use each of these symbols really really effectively you are going to be able to stand out from many of the other people either in your industry or in your profession. Now, bad punctuation the big problem, with bad punctuation is that it just makes you look sloppy. It makes whatever piece of work you doing sloppy and that's really damaging for your authority, whereas good punctuation makes you look professional. It makes you look slick, and that's what I want for you so in this course what I'm going to be doing is going through each type of punctuation one-by-one and basically showing you how to use them in the appropriate way and how to use them in a minimal way so that you are not littering your copy with unnecessary things that end up becoming a distraction for your readers. Now in other words this means using punctuation what I call a strategic way. Once you're able to do that you're going to notice a huge difference in the quality of your writing, you're going to be confident in how you apply these things because you're going to know that you're using punctuation in a way that some of the world's best writers are using it. Now if you thought the punctuation was a boring topic I hope as well to disabuse you of that notion because by the end of it you're going to see that actually these little symbols have enormous power and once you know how to leverage that power to your advantage, you're going to see them is kind of special effects that you can use to enhance both the clarity of your writing and also the beauty of your writing and for me those are the two most important things. Ok now I just want to stress in this course that this is not going to be a technical grammar type course. If you are interested in that there are other people who can who can teach that in a much more comprehensive way, and I personally have developed my writing without much formal training in grammar but just being able to observe the way that people write and to learn from that and to know when these different symbols are used effectively and what I want to do is to--what I'm teaching you here is elements of style so this is how to use these symbols in a stylish way so it's really full for the common man and woman who is alienated by the the the technical jargon that you come across so I'm gonna stick well clear of all those because I think that's the best way that I'm gonna be able to reach you and be able to teach you how to use these without getting bogged down in oh you know is this, this and this, does is related to that. So if you want that kind of thing you know there's live there are other places you can get up a formal grammar education and formal punctuation education, this is really on elements of style so I want you to bear that in mind.