Periods & Parentheses

What the heck happens when a parenthesis (or is it parenthesi? Nope. Singular = parenthesis, plural = parentheses) occurs at the end of sentence? Does the punctuation go inside or outside? Maybe you’re already clear on this, but it’s always made me wonder.

paren.jpgWell, according to Mignon Fogarty (Grammar Girl to you and me), it depends. She says:

When a parenthetical statement falls at the end of a sentence, the placement of the terminal punctuation depends on whether the words inside the parentheses are a complete sentence.

If the words inside the parentheses aren’t a complete sentence, the period, question mark, or exclamation point that ends the sentence goes after the parenthesis:

  • Squiggly likes chocolate (and nuts).
  • Could Aardvark bring home candy (quickly)?

If the words inside the parentheses are a complete sentence, the period, question mark, or exclamation point that ends the sentence goes inside the parenthesis:

  • Bring chocolate. (Squiggly likes sweets.)
  • Buy candy. (Bring it quickly!)

There you have it! And it’s actually not as complicated as I expected. 😉


Source:  Fogarty, Mignon. “Periods and Parentheses.” Web blog post. Quick and Dirty Tips. Grammar Girl, 21 February 2011. Web. 08 April 2016.
Image: Helvetica Paintings: ( ) Parentheses, Shane Becker at Flickr. CC BY 2.0.

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Who’s Moving Where?

If you haven’t seen this amazing resource, created and maintained by editor Harold Underdown, you’re missing out. Not only does Underdown list information on staff changes in the publishing world, but he orders it by date and color codes it, too. (I know, right?) As he states, “The latest information is added at the top. Companies losing or laying off staff are coded in red, while those adding staff or filling vacancies are in green.”

Great stuff, right? There’s even more. Imprints! New imprints are listed as well, with hotlinks for more information. Once you’ve gotten all you can from that page, click around the whole site. There’s a TON of good information. This is big, people! BIG! What are you still doing here? You have work to do!


Harold Underdown, “Who’s Moving Where? News and Staff Changes at Children’s Book Publishers,” Writing, Illustrating, and Publishing Children’s Books: The Purple Crayon (blog), May 2017, http://www.underdown.org/chchange.htm.