I have a confession to make:
I’m addicted to ellipses.
It’s a problem I’ve had for a long time, and it’s a problem I mean to rid myself of. Of which I mean to rid myself. Whatever.
I’m not sure when this addiction started. At first, I simply used them in quotations, to indicate a section of the quote had been removed. Then, the internet came. An ellipsis became a way to suggest “I have more to say, but I will spare you at the moment.” Alternatively, it said, “this is awkward,” or sometimes, “here, if we were having an actual conversation instead of a written one, I would pause for dramatic effect.” To me, an ellipsis was a comma on steroids. It felt like unnaturally powerful way to use punctuation to make a point.
At some point, however, I started to notice my use of the ellipsis grow more and more liberal. I would read over something I wrote, only to notice that I had ended every sentence with an ellipsis. I started using it to represent a pause in my own thought process. It no longer had any meaning, it was simply a written tick, a default punctuation, and an annoying one at that.
I know I am not alone. There are so many ellipses-abusers on the internet, it starts to feel normal.
But I am determined to put an end to my abuse! I am dedicated to using the ellipsis in a more responsible and effective way! I will not allow it to go the way of the exclamation point, overused and meaningless!
Besides, I’ve found a new love, and that is the semi-colon.