Dun Writin’—Now Whut? – 52 Adjectives (And the Commas That Go With Them…) (A series by Susan Uttendorfsky – Owner of Adirondack Editing)

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

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So, you’re merrily typing along and your character wants to put on a blue, silk, handmade scarf. Oh, wait a minute. Is that a silk, blue, handmade scarf or a handmade, silk, blue scarf? A blue, handmade, silk scarf? Oh dear!

Aha! Super Editor to the rescue!

(Imagine me swooping over your house and flying in your window, red pen in hand!)

(Ok, now imagine me 10 pounds lighter. Another ten. Ok, that’s better.)

Adjective order in English is not completely random, although what we’re going to discuss are more along the lines of guidelines rather than rules. The exception is when you’re speaking of words of general description along with words describing a physical state. These are known as coordinate adjectives and require commas. The order can be changed without altering the meaning and you are free to put the one you want to emphasize first:

  • Melissa has a…

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