Follow grammar rules when ambiguity could occur without them, or in technical cases (see example below).

  • This interview is taking place at the Floether’s home in Portobello, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Participatio guideline:

  • Please use the serial comma: this, that, and the other.

But... do NOT follow grammar rules or conventions when doing so would interrupt the cadence of the speaker.

  • Yes indeed.
  • It was an Anglican school or Episcopalian as we say here.

Use commas to indicate speech patterns and pauses.

  • And as I say, this way of studying scripture and learning systematic theology at the same time in worship, in community, is, it’s not just transforming, it’s dynamite.
  • Why, which is, why it’s so important that our young clergy, people who will have power and influence, are given a robust theology.
  • I would sometimes go up to visit him, quite frequently, actually, on a Sunday, when the rest of the family were busy when he was in the nursing home.

Commas may be used to offset extra information within a sentence, or to append extra information at the end of a sentence.

  • And brought me to, I think, brought me to the relationship I now have with Christ.
  • And he and his wife were obviously still at their morning devotions because the two bibles were laid open on the chair, the little table next to the chair.
  • I’m convinced, I think T. F. was too, that each discourse has to remain true to its own, would we call it logic.

Protip: Commas can change how written text is read and interpreted. In written form, proper grammar is often viewed as harsh or formal, while improper grammar often lends itself more toward a more conversational nature. Don't be afraid to lean away from how you were taught proper grammar and incline your hearing toward colloquial speech when placing commas in a transcription.