Pro Tips: Avoid Run-On Sentences

Have you ever read something that exhausted you?  Sometimes a sentence can just go on for too long, containing too much information.  While annoying, that isn’t necessarily a run-on sentence.  A run-on sentence is one that includes two independent clauses that are not properly separated by a conjunction or a semi-colon.  Here are some examples:

A sentence that is too long but is not a run-on:  We finally finished that project that I described to you, even though we had to stay at the office past nine 0’clock and eat Skittles from the vending machine for dinner while holding our feet in the air so the cleaning lady could vacuum under us, but it didn’t turn out as well as we would have liked, since we didn’t have the proper materials or a working printer that would connect to my laptop.

Terrible.  I’m worn out from writing it.  However, it is not a run-on sentence.  Each independent clause is separated by a comma and a conjunction.

Here is a run-on sentence:  We ate hot dogs, they were nasty.

Worse yet, some people leave out the comma:  We ate hot dogs they were nasty.

Correct this by one of a couple of methods.  You may split it into two complete sentences.  You may also use a semi-colon.  A comma and conjunction would also work.

Any of these are acceptable:

We ate hot dogs.  They were nasty.

We ate hot dogs; they were nasty.

We ate hot dogs, but they were nasty.

 

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