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  1. #1
    alpacinoutd is offline Key Member
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    Janet tried to calm Sara down

    Is this correct and natural?

    Janet tried to calm Sara down after her near-death experience. "A heart attack can happen to anyone. Even young people experience it. You need to do a lot of exercise from now on. And no more pizza for you Sara," she said, smiling.

    "You know what was the scariest part?", asked Sara, looking out the window.

    "What's that?"

    "When I was at the hospital, fighting, hanging on to dear life," Sara made quotation marks with her fingers and paused. "Life or whatever I'm doing is called..."

    Jane gave her hand a gentle squeeze. "Carry on Sara."

    "A part of me...," her voice trailed off. She turned her head and gazed Jane directly into the eyes. "A part of me wanted to let go. I was resigned to it. I welcomed it. Heck I wanted it. I have an empty heart. I feel nothing about anyone and anything," she mouthed.

    Jane's face flashed with anger. "Oh come on! That is the stupidest thing I have heard in a while. You think life is about feeling anything about anyone or anything?!" She stood up, looming over her. "I would really slap you if it wasn't for the fact that you just had a heart attack."

    Sara looked at her with an inscrutable expression on her face. Her eyes gave nothing away. Jane wondered what was wrong with her. What was going on in the abyss that is Sara's mind. She wished she could find out what was going on deep in her core.

  2. #2
    Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
    Charlie Bernstein is offline VIP Member
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    Re: Janet tried to calm Sara down

    Quote Originally Posted by alpacinoutd View Post
    Is this correct and natural?

    Janet tried to calm Sara down after her near-death experience. "A heart attack can happen to anyone. Even young people experience it. You need to do a lot of exercise from now on. And no more pizza for you, Sara," she said, smiling.

    "You know what was the scariest part?", asked Sara, looking out the window.

    "What's that?"

    "When I was at the hospital, fighting, hanging on for dear life," Sara made quotation marks with her fingers and paused. "Life or whatever I'm doing is called..."

    Jane gave her hand a gentle squeeze. "Carry on, Sara."

    Carry on is an independent clause. That is, it can stand alone without the word Sara. So it needs a comma. Without it, Jane is telling Sara to carry Sara on.


    "A part of me...," her voice trailed off. She turned her head and gazed Jane directly into Jane's eyes. "A part of me wanted to let go. I was resigned to it. I welcomed it. Heck I wanted it. I have an empty heart. I feel nothing about anyone and anything," she said.

    Jane's face flashed with anger. "Oh come on! That is the stupidest thing I have heard in a while. You think life is about feeling anything about anyone or anything?"

    The interrobang (?!) is becoming more common, but it still isn't standard. Yet.


    She stood up, looming over her. "I would really slap you if you hadn't just had a heart attack."

    Sara looked at her with an inscrutable expression on her face. Her eyes gave nothing away. Jane wondered what was wrong with her. What was going on in the abyss that is Sara's mind? She wished she could find out what was going on deep in her core.
    There!
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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