So I read that short clauses taking commas is a style choice but preferably the use of a semi-colon, full stop, conjunction is accurate. As in:

Experts teach; peers comfort (or and).

But if for example you had:

Donna's good at football, she's always scoring goals.


Joey's so good at football, he's talented.

Or shorter:

Donna's great, she's a star.

Do these fall into the same rules? You see this usage informally from time to time.

Can he's and she's not act as a conjunction in these instances?


You do often see this, but it is considered a flaw in formal writing (called a comma splice).

You should use a semicolon to separate grammatically independent, but related clauses:

Donna's great; she's a star!

Donna's so good a football; she's always scoring goals.

The word "she's" cannot act as a conjunction. (If "she's" was a conjunction, what is the subject of "she's always scoring goals"?)

In informal writing, using comma splices are fairly common, and generally overlooked.

  • What is the term for words like 'it' that bridge sentences but aren't conjunctions for independent clauses. They 'act' as conjunctions connecting dependent clauses. – bluebell1 Apr 23 '18 at 17:25
  • The don't act as bridges or conjucntions. They are pronouns, functioning as the subject of clauses. They don't connect dependent clauses. The start a new independent clause. – James K Apr 23 '18 at 18:33
  • I don't really understand the comment, but I think you can ask it as a new question rather than as a comment. – James K Apr 24 '18 at 19:19
  • Donna's great; she's a star vs If Donna is so great, why isn't she a star. – bluebell1 Apr 25 '18 at 8:38
  • The hour was late as she closed her eyes and began to drift to sleep, drifting on a sea of possibilities. (what do we call the contrast in these two subordinate/opening clauses) This example and the 'If Donna is so great'. – bluebell1 Apr 25 '18 at 8:41

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