Guest Top Ten List
John McIntyre's excellent and very popular You Don't Say blog is now located at a new site. At the time of his dismissal on April 28, McIntyre was director of the copy desk at The Baltimore Sun, where he had worked for nearly 23 years. He has taught copy editing at Loyola College of Maryland since 1995 and has conducted seances on writing and editing at more than two dozen publications in the United States and Canada. A charter member of the American Copy Editors Society, he served as its second president. Follow him on Twitter @johnmcintyre. He is available for hire.
10 Blogs to Improve Your Mastery of Language and Editing
Philip B. Corbett of The New York Times must be a sensible, literate, and well-informed person, because his advice on grammar and usage almost always agrees with mine.
Doug Fisher, from his vantage point in South Carolina, comments knowledgeably on trends in journalism, both print and electronic.
Elizabeth Large’s restaurant blog at The Baltimore Sun is more about gratin than grammar, but her group of regular commenters (the Sandbox) has achieved something more talked about than seen: a virtual community. Hang on for the ride when they go off-topic. And it was moving to see their collective responses when one of their number died suddenly.
You can read fev’s remarks on headline writing and usage, but his best work is an analytic reading of articles. He unerringly searches out the faulty assumptions, the gaps, the obsolete conventions, and the shallowness of articles in print and on the Internet.
The discussion among professional linguists can get abstruse for the lay reader, but anyone who is serious about improving his or her grasp of the craft of editing should be heeding what the Language Loggers are saying.
Copy editors, while they last, are the pathologists of the operation, focusing their attention on diseased tissue. Craig Silvermnan’s Regret the Error provides daily autopsy results, and the annual plagiarism/fabrication roundup shows what sharp-eyed editors should be alert for.
Jim Romenesko has become the indispensable man, with day-to-day, hour-by-hour updates on what is going on in journalism.
David Sullivan, an indispensable man at The Philadelphia Inquirer, started out observing the parallels between the decline of the department store and the decline of the daily newspaper. It looked quirky, but he branched out into two fascinating tracks: a kind of archaeology/anthropology of the place of the department store in various communities, and a thoughtful analysis of the plight of the newspaper.
Andy Bechtel teaches at Chapel Hill, and his comments on journalism in general and editing in particular are those of a knowledgeable observer. If you can’t take his class, read his blog.
I wish Jan Freeman posted every day, twice a day. Everything she says about language and usage is informed and sensible, brightened by a puckish sense of humor. Steven Pinker praised her in The Language Instinct, and I can only add my humble tribute.