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Doesn't it drive everyone crazy when your girl/boyfriend constantly corrects your use of verb contractions to start a sentence. In my daily conversations with others, I often begin a sentence with the use of a verb contraction. In the example I used to start this paragraph I would be interrupted in mid-sentence to be informed: "You mean, does it drive everyone crazy". My partner refuses to accept that proper English dialogue in daily informal conversation can include the use of verb contractions when beginning a sentence. I understand that the use of verb contractions is best avoided in formal writing, but is it grammatically correct to start a sentence in conversation using one.

This refers to most verb contractions such as: aren't, don't, won't, wouldn't, couldn't, shouldn't, etc.
Comments  
Your "Doesn't it drive everyone crazy when your girl/boyfriend constantly corrects your use of verb contractions to start a sentence." is an example of a type of "question" called the rising declarative, IMO.
You find plenty of these in good fiction. Not sure there is any such rule.

Some Short Stories by James, Henry - Chapter 7
"Doesn't it depend a good deal on what you call drama?" Maud spoke as one who had already thought it out. "Doesn't it depend on what you call romance?" ...




The Sea Fairies by Baum, L. Frank - Chapter 16
"Doesn't it ever get dark?" inquired Trot. "Never. We know nothing of the passage of time or of day or night. The light always shines just as you see it now ...




Mary Louise by Baum, L. Frank - Chapter 1
"Doesn't it seem to reflect on our characters?" timidly asked Dorothy Knerr. "Indeed it does!" asserted Sue Finley. "But here comes Mary Louise; ...


Anne of Green Gables by Montgomery, Lucy Maud - Chapter 36
Doesn't it seem wonderful? I'll have a brand new stock of ambition laid in by that time after three glorious, golden months of vacation. ...

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Doesn't it drive everyone crazy when your girl/boyfriend constantly corrects your use of verb contractions to start a sentence.

  • Doesn't it drive you mad when you know you're right but the other person refuses to consider that a possibility?

  • Doesn't it drive you mad when people make a huge deal about you making a small mistake?

  • Doesn't it drive you crazy when a small client who is clearly on a shoestring budget manages to pay you on time but that huge corporate or government client keeps you waiting?
All I can say is that you need a question mark:

Doesn't it drive everyone crazy when your girl/boyfriend constantly corrects/is constantly correcting your use of verb contractions to start a sentence?

I understand that the use of verb contractions is best avoided in formal writing, but is it grammatically correct to start a sentence in conversation using one.

Why not? I found it in many interviews all around the Internet. It is not a true question. It is a call to agree with the observation that follows and to give the personal reasons or opinion.
Isn't she silly.

Presumably she would want us to say 'Is she not silly'? Contractions are fine in conversation.
Hi Skicook

Verb contractions are acceptable in conversations. In writing a composition or a story, it is correct to use verb contractions when a character is speaking.
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They are also ok in informal writing.
Today, 5:39 PMPost :266018


Grammar Geek





Posts 2,460
Advanced Member
Joined on 10-01-2006
Pennsylvania, USA



Re: Contractions..doesn't, aren't, won't, shouldn't....







When the question is phrased with the negative (don't you, doesn't he), it shows an assumption on the part of the speaker that he or she is correct. It can also be used to show surprise. I don't think the phrasing makes it "negative" in the emotional sense, but the assumption the person has made can be offensive. (In other words, blame the person asking, not the grammar.)

And, as said above, you simply smile and say "No, not at all." or "No, not yet."

Barbara
American English

Uh... I'd like to point out that the posting immediately above is from another thread. In that one, the person expressed frustration with how to respond when questions DO begin in the negative, not whether they were okay grammatically.

I too would feel under attack if my husband constantly corrected me.
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