Sunday, August 05, 2012

Punctuation Pointers, Part 4: Capitalize after a Colon?

You will not find unanimous opinion on whether to capitalize the first word of an independent clause following a colon. An excellent online resource, which I've recommended on this blog before, The Guide to Grammar and Writing by Capital Community College, Hartford, Connecticut, suggests that you should capitalize in certain cases, yet this contradictory example sentence appears on its explanation:
There is only one thing left to do now: confess while you still have time.
But if you read the rest of the post, you'll get a sensible explanation of its use. By the way, I do capitalize independent clauses following colons and do not capitalize dependent clauses following colons. Examples:

Remember this: You must work hard to achieve your goals.
Remember to bring the following items: ID card, enrollment confirmation, and flash drive.