More Blog Posts
After a long dry spell of books to review, I now have a stack on my desk wanting my attention. In an effort to review books for you before they hit the remainder bin at your local bookstore, this week’s Tip covers two dictionary-style books: The Right Word and The Oxford Dictionary of Journalism.
The Right Word
The Right Word: Correcting Commonly Confused, Misspelled, and Misused Words by Elizabeth Morrison is designed for student writers and business professionals wanting to improve their writing skills. Morrison, a writing teacher and journalist,...Read More »
Can you be combulated while working at your standing desk? That would be so fun! Find out in today’s News Roundup.
- “Getting “Discombobulated” on Lexicon Valley”: Do you often wonder if you can be combobulated? Here’s the answer. (Vocabulary.com)
- “Is ‘So Fun’ Ready for Prime Time?”: Is fun a predicate adjective or an attributive adjective? How should copyeditors use it? (The Grammarphobia Blog)
- “New Words - 28 July 2014”: Don’t just stand around: check out new words standing desk, reshoring, and step-in. (About Words)
Dow Jones is seeking a news editor to join its Wall Street Journal Greater New York team. WSJ has 36 million monthly online viewers and a thriving Greater New York section that includes the real-time reporting and news blog Metropolis.
The news editor will manage the daily online news coverage of the WSJ Greater New York section, including assigning and editing news and features, writing Metropolis posts, and engaging in interactive projects and social media.
This full-time position requires advanced copyediting skills, mastery of AP style...Read More »
Editors are used to phrasing diplomatic queries. Nearly everyone has interacted with an author who sees every suggestion as a personal attack. But it can be even harder to edit some authors’ words: those written by the CEO, the Principal, your boss, or the “foremost authority on X,” for example. How do you tell “the most important person” that their prose need major revision?
Those Very Important People are less likely to be used to criticism. And though their abilities have brought them into a position of great respect and influence, those abilities probably aren’t related to writing. Writing is hard; and it’s a completely different skillset that they may not have cultivated.
Inconsistencies, infelicities, libel, atrocious grammar, racist colloquialisms, and plagiarism...Read More »
by Katharine O'Moore-Klopf, ELS
We freelance editors like to think we can avoid many issues that staff editors must deal with. But two issues we can’t sidestep are the need to document our actions on each project and the need to manage the discussion when we are mistakenly blamed for project problems. Yes, sometimes we are at fault, but that’s a topic for another column.
How You Should Document
If you document everything you do during a project, you can use your records to stay on track as you go. You can also use them later to jog your memory, to determine ways to improve your work processes, and even to defend your reputation if a client incorrectly believes that you are at...Read More »
Farmers markets, garden plots, window boxes -- summer produce is beginning to appear everywhere you look. If you’re among those who have put in the labor to nurse fruits and vegetables into existence or to search out the best of summer’s bounty in the markets and shops, may you be blessed with the best basketfuls of produce. And only as many of your neighbor’s cucumbers and zucchinis as you want.
To correctly solve our bountiful Wordoku, make sure that every row, column, and 3x3 box contains the following letters exactly once [difficulty: moderate]:Read More »
Headline writers love to pile up nouns to get as much information as possible into limited space. But many words in English are the same whether nouns, verbs or adjectives, often leading to ambiguous results.
That’s where the copyeditor comes in—when there is a copyeditor handy to come in.
On Wednesday, the Associated Press tweeted:
BREAKING: Dutch military plane carrying bodies from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 crash lands in Eindhoven.
There was no crash landing of a plane carrying victims. The victims of a crash landed in the Netherlands.
There is nothing grammatically wrong...Read More »
By education and career choice, I am a moderate prescriptivist (with descriptivist sympathies).* In my personal communication, I carefully “couldn’t care less” and I enjoy the game of keeping fewer and less in distinct count and non-count realms. In my professional life, I edit or query any nonstandard usage. It’s part of what my clients pay me to do. So I was surprised to realize that I had, for the first time, used literally to describe something that wasn’t literal -- and that I was okay with it.
I used the non-literal meaning of literally in a comment to a writer this week while I was editing. And I don't regret it. Please finish reading before you come to revoke my professional-editor...Read More »
Today’s News Roundup continues the conversation on ethics in editing, advises on approaches to resolving conflicts, and shares thoughts on what makes a great editor.
- “The Business of Editing: An Editorial Code of Professional Responsibility”: A code of professional responsibility not only raises the status of our profession but it also gives editors guidance on how to resolve ethical conflicts. (An American Editor)
- “Hot vs Cold: A Temperature-Based Approach to Conflict Resolution”: Define the type of conflict you’re facing and you’ll know better how to resolve it. (99U)
- “What Makes a Great...