And, so what? Conjunctions rule

I love starting a sentence with ‘And’, ‘So’ and the occasional ‘But’.

And I get irritated when I do this and someone scrubs my ‘And’, ‘So’,  or ‘But’, reasoning that it’s not grammatical to start a sentence this way.

Let’s clear up a long held misconception. There is no rule of grammar which states that you should not start a sentence with ‘And’, ‘So’, ‘But’ or any other conjunction that takes your fancy.

For as long as I’ve been alive (37 years and 360 days) starting a sentence with a conjunction has been widely considered a big no no by everyone but professional writers.

I won’t go into my frustration about the accountants, salespeople and administrators out there who think they’re writing experts.

But as business, industry and government start to accept, if not embrace, a more conversational written communication style, better understood by people from all walks of life, why the heck would you not start a sentence with a conjunction?

Avoiding conjunctions at the beginning of a sentence is a stylistic preference, and preferences are hard things to change. If you’re gay and prefer boys, you’re not going to bed only to wake up and find you prefer girls the next day (or ever).

So, what now?

Pick your battles carefully. If I’m honest, I loathe sentences that end with certain prepositions. But there’s no rule of grammar which states that you should not end a sentence with ‘for’, ‘to’ or ‘with’. It’s just my preference not to. Whoops.

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