Tag Archives: Creativity

That Comma Thing

Oscar Wilde is credited with the following quote: “I was working on the proof of one of my poems all the morning, and took out a comma. In the afternoon I put it back again.” Source: Definitive analysis of Wilde’s comma remark:

I try, I really do. But as I read all the rules for when, how, where, and why a comma is needed my brain freezes. Creativity is stifled by the added burden and waste of time. The way I see it, by the time I send my completed book to an editor it’s going to be bloody anyway. An acquaintance, with a doctorate degree in English, once handed back a partial manuscript stating, “Stop using commas, you use too many in the wrong places, and not enough in the correct places.”  

That was my first lesson in not using a comma just because I hear a natural pause.