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Chapter 28. Mark Me: Punctuation > Big Man on Campus: The Comma - Pg. 324

Mark Me: Punctuation 324 Big Man on Campus: The Comma Writer's Block Never use a comma to separate two complete sentences. Doing so creates a type of run-on called a "comma splice." Punctuation helps readers identify clusters of words between and within sentences. Between sen- tences, the most common mark of punctuation is the period; within sentences, the most common mark of punctuation is the comma. Commas tell us how to read and understand sentences because they tell us where to pause. A correctly placed comma helps move readers from the beginning of a sentence to the end. Here are the guidelines that govern comma use: In the Beginning Commas are often necessary in the beginning of sentences. Follow these guidelines: