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As the Leaves Fall, Go Ahead and Say It: 'Autumnal'
Thursday, September 25, 2014, by Mark Allen

My favorite word is autumnal, and I must force myself to use it sparingly as the air cools and the trees shake off their green pigment to reveal the bright colors underneath. I like the earthy sound of the word, and I like the youthful images it conjures in my mind. In British English, fall is an unusual, perhaps archaic, choice. It’s the Americans and Canadians who speak of either autumn or fall, a much more explicit word for the season of falling leaves. The British may speak disdainfully of Americans’ use of the British invention soccer, but in my experience, they are fond of our fall. Forrest Wickman wrote of these two words that replaced the former season of harvest for Slate in 2012. He shared this...


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Copyediting Newsletter

Most Recent Issue


August-September 2014

This issue may be in the middle of summer, but this issue of Copyediting is more autumn-like—it deals with a lot of change.

Our big change is with our In Style writers. We bid good-bye to our long-serving columnists Norm Goldstein and Paul R. Martin. They’ve given us decades of generous advice, and we’ll miss them. Stepping into their very big shoes is freelance writer and copyeditor Karen Yin, whose first column promises great things ahead for readers.

The rest of the issue tackles changes in language (what’s the deal with possessives and gerunds?), changes in processes (hint: document everything!), changes in how we do our jobs (research journal articles online), and even what our jobs entail (OCR and EPUB files, anyone?).

Download your issue now, and stay on top of the changes that affect your career. 

Other Recent Issues


June/July 2014

Our June–July issue is packed full of lessons from this year’s ACES event. The conference theme this year was Digital in the Desert, and our issue reflects that. Although digital publishing has disrupted publishing in general, it also offers copyeditors opportunities to make themselves more valuable to their employers by improving the quality of the content they work on.

Download the newsletter, and you’ll find practical advice on:

  • Headline writing
  • Linking
  • Search engine optimization
  • Promoting via social media
  • Getting people over the paywall 

We have all our regular departments as well, so even if you’re old school, there’s a lot for you here. You won’t want to miss our articles on he versus him, eggcorns, and Britishisms.


April/May 2014

With the arrival of this issue, I hope you are experiencing the first glories of spring and can shout, “We made it through the winter!”

Our April–May issue offers you lots of opportunity for new growth, as well. I tackle the thorny subject of fine-tuning an author’s writing style in the In Depth feature, and you can cross-pollinate with our Currents, In Style, and Word Resource Roundup columns.

Our Technically Speaking feature offers you another way to grow: by learning HTML. It’s a great skill to add to your resumé—as is membership in a professional group. Katherine O’Moore-Klopf gives you several reasons to join at least one professional group this season.

The release of this newsletter coincides with this year’s national ACES conference, a great opportunity for copyeditors to blossom. Several of your favorite Copyediting writers will be in attendance, including yours truly. If you’ll be in Las Vegas, please introduce yourself. We love to meet our readers!


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