Today is WT*$*AISTPT Comma Day ;)
This post is based on a piece of genius I have pinned up over my computer.
I'm letting Rowland, from from my wip - STARRING - demystify the slippery little tadpoles of punctuation.
Rowland drew a defensive ward.
One independent clause needs a full stop at the end.
Rowland drew a defensive ward when the forest was pierced by red eyes.
The independent clause is before the dependent clause.
(Punctuation only follows a dependent clause so the full stop is all that is needed.)
When the forest was pierced by red eyes, Rowland drew a defensive ward.
The dependent clause is now at the beginning of the sentence. As punctuation follows a dependent clause, the comma is needed.
Rowland drew a defensive ward; he repelled the danger.
These are two independent clauses; attach them with a semicolon.
Rowland drew a defensive ward, and he repelled the danger.
There is an alternative form of punctuation, because you can join independent clauses together with a comma and a conjunction.
DO YOU FIND COMMAS SLITHER INTO YOUR WORK WHEN YOU ARE NOT LOOKING?