Exclamation Points

Reserve the exclamation point for exclamations (Alas, poor Yorik!) and shouts (Hey, you!), not excitement, interest, or anything else that may entice this already-overused punctuation mark. As with italics, using too many exclamation points lessens the effect of each exclamation and can render otherwise good sentences taxing or trodden. And use only one exclamation point at a time—more does not increase the intensity of the mark: prefer Stop! to Stop!!! While amateur writers love the exclamation point, careful writers save it for the rare exclamation or, in dialogue, shout that cannot be contextually understood.