Do You Know The Important Difference Between An Em Dash And An En Dash?

Mary Norris has been a copyeditor at The New Yorker for over three decades and she’s learned a thing or two during her career. The New Yorker is often touted as the go-to publication when it comes to grammatical style and we have an inkling that Mary Norris is behind its acclaim. She’s even been affectionately nicknamed “the comma queen” based on her vocational skills! So who better to lend us some advice on the idiosyncrasies of the written word!

One thing that is often overlooked by writers is the difference between:

A hyphen: –

An en dash: –

And an em dash: —

When you come to understand the subtle differences between these three dashes, you’ll impress editors, readers, and even be able to teach others! They’re all three used for very different things, but they can revolutionize the way you write!

Are you afflicted with the hyphen-love of a copyeditor?

Do you use en dashes during your 9–5?

Do you enthusiastically preach —and we hope you do, for you are members of The Writers Circle— the many uses of em dashes?

Let us know in the comments!

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