The Exclamation Mark!

You have to admit it. The exclamation mark is the coolest punctuation around. It's certainly the most boisterous. It looks like this !, and it has two jobs.

1. Punctuating Exclamatory Sentences

2. Punctuating Interjections

1. Exclamatory Sentences

Exclamatory sentences are sentences that end with exclamation points.

We talk about exclamatory sentences in contrast to the other three types of sentences (commands, statements, and questions).

Basically, exclamatory sentences are sentences that show strong emotion.

I love that kitten!

The sentence above is an example of a sentence showing happiness, but you can also use exclamation points to show anger, frustration, confusion, love, etc.

You name the emotion, and the exclamation point can punctuate it!

One word to the wise: Don't use exclamation points too much. You are only supposed to pepper them into your writing if at all.

If you use them too much, they will either lose their effectiveness or your audience will think that you are continually yelling at them.

Neither one of those is a good thing.

* However, I must admit that I am a rabid rule breaker when it comes to this one. During my editing process, I delete many exclamation points. I guess that I use them to sound chipper, but I shouldn't use them as much as I do.

2. Interjections

The other job of the exclamation point is to punctuate interjections. If you don't yet know about interjections, you're in for a treat.

They are one of the eight parts of speech, and they are words that we use to show emotion. They are not grammatically connected to the rest of the sentence.

Here are some examples.

Hurray! My teacher gave me an A!

Yuck! This hamburger is disgusting!

Note that you can also punctuate interjections with a comma if they are showing a feeling that is not as strong.

Oops, I left the milk sitting out.

Darn, I can't believe I lost that book.

You can read more about interjections here, or you can look at a list of interjections here.

Wasn't that easy? Now you know all about exclamation marks!

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Now you know how to use an exclamation mark!

If you want to teach or learn grammar the easy way, then follow a step-by-step program that clearly lays everything out for you and allows you to move at your own pace. The Get Smart program is presented in a logical sequence, so it's not an overwhelming mishmash of information. Before you know it, you'll be a grammar and sentence diagramming pro. The whole program is online, so you have instant access to these lessons and videos. It's easy and fun. You can get it at www.GrammarRevolution.com/daily-diagrams.html

Keep learning and have fun!

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