Commas and Coordinating Conjunctions (FANBOYS)
You've seen the commentary, but what does that mean? Coordinating conjunctions are all of the following:
You can remember them by being FANBOYS of good grammar. If you're having trouble with comma usage each time one of these pops up, here's a trick that can make it easier. You only need a comma when each part can stand on its own. So whenever you see one of the FANBOYS, split the sentence around it.
I went to the store |and| bought eggs.
"I went to the store" is a complete sentence, but "bought eggs" is not. This sentence is fine the way it is.
I went to the store |and| I bought eggs.
"I went to the store" is a complete sentence. "I bought eggs" is also a complete sentence. The sentence should read: I went to the store, and I bought eggs.
You can do this with any of the FANBOYS.
I went to the store, |but| the chickens were on strike, |so| there were no eggs.
I went to the store |but| found no eggs.
They say women are from Venus, |yet| Mars already has Martians, |so| why do they need men too?
If you can split a sentence, you can join the full-fledged FANBOYS.
Note: one small editorial change was made on 5/3. We added an "s" to "pop" for "pops."