Sometimes, I fear that I’m a word snob. I tried to get into the Reddit forums, but those “writers” shot me down with flaming arrows. Apparently, according to the “writers” on Reddit, I am a snob for using semicolons. It makes me look like I’m “showing off my knowledge of grammar,” and “rubbing it in your face.”
I know, that’s rubbish. Knowing how to use a punctuation mark isn’t being a snob. It’s intelligent. The person that said those things didn’t capitalize their “i’s” either. But, it did get me thinking about what it meant to be a word snob.
I don’t correct people when they speak; that’s snobby, and rude. I find myself making grammar mistakes in my spoken speech, too. It’s dialog. The rules are more fluid. Or, as we say, “fluider.”
Still, it leaves the question, what is a word snob? Is it being able to properly use a semicolon? Is the punctuation mark outdated? If so, then so are the rest, for we’ve been using them longer. The semicolon is a piece of our written language, and to ignore it because you don’t know how to use it, or don’t feel comfortable using it, doesn’t mean that it is wrong or “outdated.” Don’t hold prejudice because you don’t understand it.
Professional writers use semicolons. True. There’s a semicolon in the first chapter of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. Go find it.