It’s clear that the caps lock button is as overused as cheese.
That was a lie. You can never have too much cheese. But constantly capitalizing words and phrases has got to be bad for your health.
I’ll get the caps going when I Want To Capitalize Very, Very Important Words.
Or when I WANT TO GET MY POINT ACROSS!
Or, what if I TURN IT ON FOR NO GOOD REASON AT ALL? THERE’S JUST NO REASON.
When you do this, you are making your Facebook friends cringe. It’s time to kill the caps lock, people.
I’m going to make this short and sweet and give you a list of all the times you should use all caps for emphasis. Dig it:
Where did my list go? That’s odd. It was here just a second ago. Oh, wait. What is it that Brian Garner, the king of all things grammar, said about all caps? He said, “Avoid them. A block of all caps is hard to read, and the longer the block the harder it is to read.”
The Chicago Manual of Style holds the same belief, especially for emphasizing words. CMOS says, “Capitalizing an entire word or phrase for emphasis is rarely appropriate.”
So what do you do when you want to emphasize a word? Italicize it, baby. See how smooth that looks? Just because a word is important doesn’t mean you need to capitalize the first letter of said word (Like So). Just italicize it. But sparingly, please.
If you are writing an article or finally starting a chapter in your novel, then you can capitalize the first letters of each word. For example: How to Write Your Life Story. For more on capitalizing titles, check out CMOS.
Now, stop shouting at your Facebook friends, and turn the caps lock off.