Your 10-minute writing brush-up                      FEBRUARY  2017

About UpWORDly Mobile EXPRESS

EXPRESS pops up in email inboxes once a month to prod busy people to sharpen their language skills. It's produced by
a sweeping but unpretentious grammar, usage and plain language resource. Its creator is George Pearson, a writer and editor based in Stratford, Ontario.






Headline
howlers 
Red tape holds up new bridges

Cold wave linked to temperatures

Man struck by lightning faces battery charge

E-town police fatally shoot man with knife


Using the ellipsis
An ellipsis ( . . . ) is used to indicate the omission of a word or words within quoted material. It consists of three spaced periods.
 
If you are omitting words within a quote, it looks like this:
Ms. Bibeau told The Globe and Mail, "We will definitely increase the proportion of our international assistance budget to . . . the full range of services. Whether we go through the fund or we go directly with one or the other partners, the way is not really the issue."
 
If the ellipsis is preceded by a complete sentence, it will look like this:
Ms. Bibeau told The Globe and Mail, "We will definitely increase the proportion of our international assistance budget to sexual and reproductive health rights and the full range of services. . . . the way is not really the issue." [Note the terminal period is closed up as it normally is at the end of a sentence.]
 
If the ellipsis comes at the end of the quoted material, it will look like this:
Ms. Bibeau told The Globe and Mail, "We will definitely increase the proportion of our international assistance budget to sexual and reproductive health rights and the full range of services. . . ."
[Note terminal punctuation inserted before ellipsis. Source: The Canadian Writer's Handbook (fifth edition)]
 
Three spaced periods can also indicate omission of one or more sentences or whole paragraphs.
 
When quoting poetry of at least four lines, use a complete line of spaced dots/periods to indicate that one or more lines have been omitted.
 
If your organization has a style sheet, by all means consult it, as its desired formatting for the ellipsis may depart from the norm.

Please write to me if you have comments about anything covered in this edition of UpWORDly Mobile EXPRESS or comments about language use you'd like to share with EXPRESS readers.
 
Sincerely,
George Pearson