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Watch Your Language! Tips from a Working Editor by Laurel Olson Cook

Watch Your Language! Tips from a Working Editor

by Laurel Olson Cook

80 pages
An easy-read guide to correcting common errors in English usage.

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(PDF format)
Category: Writing:Tools
About the Book
Watch Your Language! Tips from a Working Editor targets the most glaring errors editors find when they copyedit or proofread written materials, from company reports to full-length books. Starting out by explaining the use of apostrophes, dashes, hyphens and quotation marks, author Cook proceeds to explain such familiar word confusions as "it's" versus "its," "principle" versus "principal," "affect" versus "effect" before going on to common problems with pronouns, when to use "who" versus "whom," the distinction between "which" and "that," the nefarious "run-on" sentence, "dummy" subjects, and more, more, more!

In the last two of its six sessions, Watch Your Language gives pointers on proofreading and buying dictionaries. Just so that readers can see how they're doing, she includes a final exam with an answer key. The idea is to use the exam as information about what session(s) you may want to review, not as judgment about how much you were able to retain.

Knowing that not everyone finds English grammar and usage as fascinating a subject as she, Laurel has made an effort to make this learning experience as comfortable as possible. She includes "phunny stuff" breaks to keep up the reader-learner's spirits.

Although she believes everyone--doctors, lawyers, politicians, TV anchors, and corporate leaders included--can benefit from this review of basic grammar and usage, pressed to pin down the book's target audiences, she suggests the following:

+ a small business that needs to put out promotional fliers

+ corporations or institutes offering training programs for staff

+ business owners, especially those offering word processing or desktop publishing

+ secretaries having the responsibility of composing correspondence

+ students graded on producing satisfactory written assignments

+ employees working toward career advancement

+ junior scientists required to write periodic reports

+ individuals interested in self-publishing

+ court reporters transcribing depositions and court proceedings

+ ANYONE who feels she/he never "got it" in school and still doesn't understand the idiosyncrasies of the language

Watch Your Language! provides (1) an excellent refresher for the legions of individuals who want to "clean up" their worst mistakes without learning everything there is to know about English grammar, (2) a user-friendly training course for employees, and (3) a good foundation for those wanting to move on to advanced expository writing.

 

Reviews
I recently finished reading Watch Your Language! At first I went straight to the chapters that interested me most. I was thrilled to find some of my grammar questions from high school answered. With highlighter in hand, I proceeded to read the entire book. Most of my writing is now on the Internet, and this book will be an invaluable reference.
- Michele Affronte, Real Estate Sales
I found the suggestions and examples contained in Watch Your Language! to be immensely practical and directly applicable to my daily written work product.
- Zachary Epstein, Attorney at Law

 

 

About the Author
Laurel Olson Cook, professional editor and published writer, started her own editorial services business (A Way with Words) a decade ago after having been an in-house editor for many years. She lives in northern California and works in cyberspace, serving clients from California to Japan.

 

 

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