Title says it all. When I say it, I often pause after now. Not sure if it's correct to have the comma there or not.

  • You don't mean 'spell'; you mean 'punctuate'. – Peter Shor Jun 6 '13 at 3:10
  • @petershor That's so meta. ;) – Tim Visher Jun 7 '13 at 0:58

If you pause after the Now, when saying Now, on with the show!, then putting in a comma indicates that pause.

It isn't right or wrong to include or omit the comma. But (IMHO), most people would probably pause after the Now (as you do), do it's probably better to include the comma.

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  • 2
    Technically, it's not really a pause; it's more likely a lengthening of Now, with an intonation dip of mid-high-low-mid, as in counting: 38, 39, 40, 41, etc. A spectrograph normally does not record any silences in speech. – John Lawler Jun 6 '13 at 1:08
  • Now let's think about this... I can include the [optional] comma there or not, depending whether I'm making a measured observation, or a hasty interjection. But in my "inner voice", OP's construction sounds more like "Now be off with you!", where it seems to me the vast majority of writers have chosen not to include a comma. – FumbleFingers Jun 6 '13 at 2:42
  • I would also point out that I don't often pause after 'now' when I say 'Now be off with you!'. :) – Tim Visher Jun 7 '13 at 0:58

A per def. 2 of Oxford the now you are using is to get attention to the rest of the sentence, in a conversational manner. Hence, both the examples in my link have a comma after the now.

Used, especially in conversation, to draw attention to a particular statement or point in a narrative:

now, my first impulse was to run away

I don’t like Scotch. Now, if it had been Irish Whiskey you’d offered me*

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