Posted by: episystechpubs | January 7, 2013

Editor’s Corner: Spaces and Punctuation

Okay, enough with the fun and games; today I have a couple rules for you on spacing with punctuation. This is probably familiar to most of you, but I still see two spaces after periods in some of the things I edit.

Rule 1: If you learned to type on a typewriter rather than a computer keyboard, it is time to give up the two spaces after punctuation. I know, it can be tough—you press that spacebar twice like you have a nervous tic. Now it’s time to tame your reflexes and press it only once. Despite what you might’ve learned as a young ‘un, in our world of Word, you only need one space after the following punctuation marks:

· periods

· commas

· semicolons

· colons

· exclamation points

· question marks

· quotation marks

Rule 2: Do not use spaces on either side of a hyphen. (We’ll save other types of dashes for another day.) For example, “My house was built eighty-eight years ago.”

Go forth and prosper!

Kara Church

Senior Technical Editor

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