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I penned this sentence in a recent post...
I have revisited that list a few times in the past days and yes indeed it is daunting and probably beyond me, but what's the saying, reach for the stars and you might just hit the moon?
I really wanted to place the question mark mid sentence and considered this...
I have revisited that list a few times in the past days and yes indeed it is daunting and probably beyond me, but what's the saying? reach for the stars and you might just hit the moon.
Opinions please. Thank you.
If you are unsure of the saying, I would write: ". . . but what's the saying? Reach for the stars and you might just hit the moon?"
If you are sure of the saying, then I would write: " . . . but what's the saying? Reach for the stars and you might just hit the moon."
> 2, 3
The 'reach' capitalised, constructs a new sentence though, doesn't it? I am tempted to leave it in lower case. I certainly have read some 'classics' that have used a question mark, mid-sentence, though I cannot call them to mind at this moment.
This may be archaic however.
I agree with lilithcat: either way it's going to feel more comfortable split into two sentences.
No reason why you couldn't put the saying inside quotation marks -
What's the saying(?) "Reach for the stars and you might just hit the moon"?
#4 The question mark already ended the sentence as it has the same function as a full stop (period).
But don't forget, all these rules only apply to formal writing anyway. In the same way that it used to be verboten to begin a sentence with a preposition, yet is now perfectly fine informally, you still wouldn't want to do that in a job application. Writing on LT can be equated with informal chat and less formal rules apply - so yes, on here you can stick a question mark in the middle of a sentence f it helps to make your meaning clearer and you will still be correct: context is everything!
Ed to get rid of italics. Apologies to Sophie if you had to do it for me :(
I think I'd go for: "... probably beyond me, but - what's the saying? - reach for the stars ...".
Hi Sophie (and thanks to all contributors)
I was indeed thinking of the question mark then the hyphen. (Or was that a dash?)
I would have used the original sentence but added inverted commas round 'reach ... moon'. Having said that, to me it looks pretty legitimate as it stands - and some of the suggestions made do not.
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