[Grammar] that is not much of a problem—it just hurts a lot.

sania-baharat

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When I was a teenager I was stung by a bee. For most people, that is not much of a problem—it just hurts a lot.

What does "—" mean in sentences?
Can we use in an academic writing?
 
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Tdol

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You could use a semicolon.
 

sania-baharat

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So, what "—" means in a sentence depends on a situation.
Here, can we use "and"?
When I was a teenager I was stung by a bee. For most people, that is not much of a problem, and it just hurts a lot.
 
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Matthew Wai

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I think 'and' as a conjunction is correct there.
 

GoesStation

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The mark you're asking about is an em-dash. It's called that because it's as long as the letter M. In the sample sentence, it represents a break in the narrative. When reading aloud, you pause for an em-dash about as long as you pause for a semicolon.
 

emsr2d2

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There should be a space either side of that dash.
We don't put a space either side of a hyphen.

It's not much of a problem — it just hurts a lot.
I'm looking for a dog-friendly hotel.

(Note that you might have trouble creating an em dash on your keyboard. I know I do! I have to go into the main Edit dropdown, then Characters & Emojis, search for "em dash", then add it manually. I tend not to bother. Normally, I use the same symbol as the hyphen but with a space either side. I went to the effort of using the proper em dash above just to make it clear.)
 
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tedmc

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How about:

For most people, that is not much of a problem, just that it hurts a lot.
 

emsr2d2

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Matthew Wai

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Simply replace the em-dash in the original sentence with a full stop and capitalize the letter after it.
 

emsr2d2

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tedmc

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Ems
I know why you have put a semi colon after "problem" and added "it's" - to correct the comma splice.

1.
For most people, that is not much of a problem; it's just that it hurts a lot. (corrected)
2. For most people, that is not much of a problem, just that it hurts a lot. (original)


But there are some sentences I found from "fraze.it" which have the same construction as mine, as follows:

This doesn't mean that no one discussed cooling, just that they were a minority.
I'm not asking you to ignore national charities, just that you also think local.
That's not to say his story isn't satisfying, just that I was left wanting more.

https://fraze.it/n_search.jsp?hardm=1&t=0&l=0&p=2&q=just+that

Are they not correct too?
 
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Matthew Wai

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'Just' is not a conjunction, so they should be comma splices.
 

GoesStation

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Good point. That's interesting. I guess it just goes to show how rarely I actually see an em dash in use. Most people use the same get-out I do - a hyphen with a space either side!
With its default settings, MS Word automatically converts a single or double hyphen surrounded by spaces into an em-dash.
 

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emsr2d2

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With its default settings, MS Word automatically converts a single or double hyphen surrounded by spaces into an em-dash.

The software on this forum doesn't though. If I type a double hyphen, that's exactly what I get -- as you can see!
 

Matthew Wai

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I think the 'be' in post #16 should also be crossed out.
 

sania-baharat

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I don't think 'and' is appropriate. I might omit 'just' and use 'but'.
I was surprised by 17 replies. :)
I really have trouble typing em dash. I had to copy it from a context in a website and pasted it here.:oops:

Now, is this paragraph OK?
When I was a teenager I was stung by a bee. For most people that is not much of a problem, but it hurts a lot. However, I reacted so badly to it that I ended up having go to the hospital.
 

Barb_D

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Because dashes play a big role in my writing, I have learned the keyboard shortcut for en- and em-dashes. In some fonts, the em looks absurdly long, so I cheat and use the en-dash, knowing 95% of the people have no idea there is a difference or care if they do.

Hold down the ALT key and type 0151 —
(ALT + 0150 gives you an en-dash) –
 
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