In two books I’ve read recently, I’ve come across what I believe is incorrect use of the semicolon. In both cases, the semicolon was used to link an independent clause with a dependent clause. Semicolons join two independent clauses (without a conjunction).
Now, I’m no grammar whiz (right, Shell?), but these caught my attention. Has this rule changed, too? I throw fits about the disuse of the serial comma, not to mention many other commas these days. One of the worst cases is when “like” is thrown into dialogue without being set off by parenthetical commas.
“It was like really cold.”
“It was, like, really cold.”
The former trips me up every ding-dong time, and, frankly, it ticks me off. I zip through the first sentence, “It was like really cold _____.” Like really cold what? Really cold bologna? Really cold piano keys?
Grammar seems to be a matter of opinion or a style choice these days. I beg to differ; sometimes rules are okay.
Or are these mistakes? I seem to notice a lot of typos, too. Most recently, “Ieana” instead of “Ileana” (a character’s name).
I’m not the only one to notice. I can’t say it any better, and I can’t provide any better examples, so you might as well read Roxanne’s copy-editing rant yourself.