As you’ve probably noticed if you’ve gotten this far in reading my blog, I am — like Emily Dickinson, apparently — “inordinately fond” of the punctuation known as the em-dash. I can’t seem to write anything of any substantial length without a lot of those just-the-right-length little lines lighting up my page.
I’ve come to believe it’s because my brain is so non-linear that I can scarcely get through one thought without a related thought intruding. It’s the way I speak — much to the frustration of those listening, I’m sure — and it’s definitely the way I write. I’ve had writing coaches try to wean me off the em, but so far I just haven’t been able to break the habit (but if I did, I could always turn to the parenthetical phrase as a little linguistic methadone to take the edge off).