A Grammar Rule to Live By by Erika Raskin

Person climing cliff
Climbing by Salvadhor (flickr.com). CC license.

“Period. New Paragraph,” the mother of a good friend of mine used to announce when changing subjects—sometimes mid-sentence.

It’s a good rule for life in general, though. I believe in changing your mind.

When I was in sixth grade I agreed to participate in an Outward Bound type field trip that involved rappelling down a cliff. I took one look at the ground below and sat on the grass.

Period. New Paragraph

I spent freshman year of college in a state so cold that by November when I went outside with wet hair, it froze and snapped in half. I transferred.

Period. New paragraph.

At my new school I declared myself a psych major only to discover physical contact with rats was part of the lab requirement. Hello American History.

Period. New Paragraph.

A few years, and three babies later, I (ambivalently) decided it was time for me to finish my Masters. When I couldn’t find a parking place at the registrar’s office, I switched directions, went home. And decided to become a writer.

Period. New paragraph.

Life is too short to live with decisions that don’t feel right. Including in politics.

Especially in politics.

Next week, I will discuss the life lesson of the semi-colon.


Plane trail in the sky
Oops I Nearly Forgot…U turn if you want to Messages from the sky by NZ__willowherb (flickr.com). CC license.



Erika Raskin
Erika Raskin is Streetlight‘s Fiction Editor. Her recent novel, Best Intentions, is a medical thriller and a finalist for the 2018 Library of Virginia’s People’s Choice Award. Her first book, Close, was about family therapy. On TV. Follow her at erikaraskin.net

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