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The Editing Hour: Mispronunciations

I have this awesome book called The Beastly Book of Mispronunciations. Here are some random samples, mostly from the Ds:

Dubois, as in W.E.B.—I remember the first time I heard his name pronounced in college, I flinched at my professor’s “awful” pronunciation (doo-boyce), but alas, that’s the correct way to pronounce it, not “doo-bwah,” the […]

The Editing Hour: A Copyediting Quiz

I’ve been a bit absent from blogland this week because I have a deadline this Sunday. I have to edit a 400-page book in 10 days on top of my regular routine of taking care of two kids and doing 5000 loads of laundry every week. Because I haven’t done much copyediting this past year, […]

The Editing Hour: The Semicolon

I love semicolons, when they’re used correctly. There are several ways to connect two independent clauses (ie complete sentences): using a coordinating conjunction or FANBOYS (for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so), using a period and a capital, or using a semicolon. When using a semicolon, make sure the two sentences are closely related. They […]

The Editing Hour: Reading Out Loud

Today, for a change, a video:

Writerland: Reading Out Loud from Meghan Ward on Vimeo.

For Fun: An Editing Quiz

I’ve been home with a cold the past couple of days, so here’s a fun editing quiz from the Times until I return tomorrow.

The Editing Hour: The Comma

When I’m editing, one of the most common mistakes I see is the absence or misplacement of the comma. People, put commas, in places they don’t belong and they leave commas out of places they do belong. There ARE rules for when, and when not, to use commas. Here they are:

When to use a […]

The Editing Hour: Freelance Editing Rates

If you’re working on a book-length project, whether it be a novel, a memoir, a nonfiction book or a doctoral thesis, you’ll probably need an editor at some point. You may have writer/editor friends who can do it for little or no money, or you may prefer to wait until you get that book deal, […]

The Editing Hour: Commonly Misused Words

Last Monday’s post on “that” vs. “which” and “I” vs. “me” led to some interesting comments about other words people often confuse. Here is the list with a few more added. They’re in no particular order.

1. Irregardless—this is not a word! It’s regardless, regardless of how much emphasis you want to put on it.


The Editing Hour: Usage and Punctuation

I am reluctant to get too much into copyediting because I am a stickler for grammatical and other errors, and I hate to get too caught up in that and lose sight of the more important things in a story like plot, dialogue, characters, etc. But here we go. A lot of common mistakes I […]

The Editing Hour: The Basics

Now for our editing hour. Here are a few basics:

For beginning writers setting out write a short story, novel or memoir, there are quite a few enduring writing rules that can transform a mediocre piece of work into one that’s readable—in other words, a piece of crap into something kinda good. Here are just […]