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The Associated Press Guide to Punctuation [Paperback]

By Rene J. Cappon (Author)
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Item description for The Associated Press Guide to Punctuation by Rene J. Cappon...

A guide in the tradition of the AP Stylebook lists authoritative information on the proper use of punctuation in effective writing, presented in an easy-to-use format.

Publishers Description
More people write for the Associated Press than for any other news service, and more writers take their style and word-usage cues from this world-famous institution than from any other journalism source. In the no-nonsense, authoritative tradition of the best-selling AP Stylebook, the top editors at the AP have now written the definitive guide to punctuation. From the when and how of the ampersand to the rules for dashes, slashes, and brackets; from the correct moment for the overused exclamation point to the rules of engagement for the semicolon, The AP Guide to Punctuation is an invaluable and easy-to-use guide to the most important aspect of clear and persuasive writing.

Citations And Professional Reviews
The Associated Press Guide to Punctuation by Rene J. Cappon has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
  • American Reference Bks Annual - 01/01/2003 page 405
  • Kliatt - 03/01/2003 page 38

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Basic Books
Pages   100
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 7.3" Width: 4.5" Height: 0.3"
Weight:   0.2 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jan 7, 2003
Publisher   Basic Books
ISBN  0738207853  
ISBN13  9780738207858  

Availability  0 units.

More About Rene J. Cappon

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Jack Cappon has served as the AP Newsfeatures editor, the AP Managing Editor, and as the AP General News Editor. He is the author of The AP Guide to Newswriting, a well-worn and oft-referred-to primer for journalists on all rungs of the media ladder.

Rene J. Cappon was born in 1924.

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Reviews - What do customers think about The Associated Press Guide to Punctuation?

Extremely helpful   Dec 12, 2007
Any writer should have this at their desk at all times. This book made me more comfortable with the semicolon.
The gold standard  Jul 26, 2007
For journalists, the AP style guides are pretty much the gold standard (or silver, depending on your economic policy leanings). With so much terrible grammar and punctuation, and often lack of punctuation, present in today's world, this is a must-have for aspiring writers, especially journalists.
Decent reference  Jan 11, 2007
There's no mystery here, and it's not intended to be a grammatically pristene work of art. It is, after all, a 96-page reference manual. If you are used to writing/editing literary and academic styles and need to refresh your memory on the punctuation variables in journalistic writing, this is an easy point-to reference that won't take up any more of your precious time than absolutely necessary.
Full of mistakes  Mar 3, 2005
It appears that some fool edited the cautionary examples for correctness. (p. 34) The grammar is poor ("verboten" as a noun? (p. 85)), and the usage is non-standard (Commas are "trundled out"? (p.37)). Some passages are self-contradictory ("With Adjectives, p. 37).

This book is not a total disaster, but I can hardly recommend it.
Efficient and entertaining, but slim for my personal taste  May 2, 2004
Written with lively and direct prose, Rene J. Cappon's guide to punctuation succeeds in being a useful resourse for the busy journalist. No reader need fear about getting bogged down in the finer points of periods. If such a situation threatens to occur, Capon is quick to suggest a workaround. This leaves the stickiest questions even stickier, a real prickle for someone as persnickety as me. But for the journalist, or journalism student, I heartily recommend it.

To those looking for a deeper understanding of punctuation, I caution against this slim tome. Organized into seventeen chapters by punctuation, some of them no more than a half of a page ('The Ampersand') and some as many as sixteen ('The Comma'), the AP GUIDE TO PUNCTUATION lacks the philosophical depth and historical background of recent bestseller EATS, SHOOTS, & LEAVES as well as the dry grammar books of days past. The examples, while fun, are not nearly as comprehensive as one expects in any book that bills itself as a reference.

By way of example, here is the entire entry for Irregular Plurals under 'The Apostrophe':


Irregular plurals also take the apostrophe: children's hour, women's rights, gentlemen's traditions, men's club, and so do nouns that are the same in singular: the single moose's antlers, the deer's track, the two corps' travels. The apostrophe stays whether the meaning is singular or plural.


No mention is made that it is preferable to disambiguate the singular and plural in such cases. Especially in journalistic writing, where clarity and simplicity are the twin grails of good style.

A dedicated journalist might prefer a true grammar of the English language or the complete and comprehensive AP STYLE BOOK. While they may be dry, they will certainly go a good deal further in answering the questions that arise in all aspects of writing.


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