Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Tidbittles from an Editorial Mind

Odd bits and pieces of editorial wisdom. (Or stupidity, depending on how you look at it.)

  • Don't use colons after a heading. I mean, it's a heading, it's already separated from the body text. Why add a colon? It's redundant.

  • While we're at it, stop using underline in headings too. Also redundant. And annoying.

  • We ought to stop using "upon" when "on" works just as well and doesn't sound quite so pretentious.

  • A reminder: Quotation marks go OUTSIDE the punctuation in nearly all instances. Outside. Outside. Outside.

  • Stop using "and/or." That's just plain lazy. Writers should know the difference between the two. And if you think I'm the only person who fights against and/or, check this out: http://writingmatters.typepad.com/blog/2010/01/using-andor-in-a-sentence-is-just-plain-dumb.html

  • Hopefully, no one will use "hopefully" to mean "I hope." It means "full of hope." If you hope something will happen, say that. Don't say "Hopefully something will happen." Oh, ugh.