[LMB] dots before my eyes

Lois McMaster Bujold lbujold at myinfmail.com
Mon Sep 28 18:05:03 BST 2015


Well, here's a thing.

In the files I've completed so far (including the 3 that have gone up), 
I converted all my 4-dot ellipses, aka ellipses followed by a period, to 
3-dot ellipses, no period.  Exceptions when there is trailing 
punctuation, a question mark or exclamation point, that offered extra 
information.

At least one test reader is now taking these to be, when followed by a 
new sentence set off by its capital, as an error in capitalization, 
assuming I mean them to run on into the next as one sentence.  I suspect 
this is not an issue when the ellipsis appears at the end of a 
paragraph, as the break there is signaled by other means.  But in 
mid-paragraph the only signal that we've switched to a new sentence is 
the capital, now that I have converted to single spaces between 
sentences for publication (I always have 2 spaces in my first drafts.)  
But, of course, some of them _are_ continuations of the same sentence, 
no caps.  Hence the confusion.

Should I tediously restore all those fracking pointless periods, to 
avert the OCD grammarians of the future who will be jumping on this (and 
me), or not?  Half the function of this whole exercise is to 
bullet-proof my prose against that sort of fiddly crit, once and for 
all.  So it should.

sigh, L.




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