Monday, December 22, 2008

Good Evening

Marcel Proust 1900.

Good Evening.

Today was another very busy day. I put in my requests for conferences with my boss and am negotiating with him and the director about them. I will have to see exactly how it goes.

I spent some more time weeding the social science section. I contacted the system office to get a circulation list to check for items with low circulation to speed up the process. I am hoping I will get it soon.

I also had a meeting with reference staff and the library director discussing collection development and weeding. We are going to rearrange the layout of the library soon. It should be an interesting challenge.

I also spent a bunch more time ordering from the Baker & Taylor Paperclips catalog. I finished doing it today. I've gone through a years worth of mass market paperback titles and selected the ones which I think we should have. This covers fantasy, fiction, historical fiction, horror, mystery, religious fiction, romance, street lit (urban fiction), suspense, and a few nonfiction titles. There were also some computer titles as well.

This morning I read some of Copyediting & Proofreading for Dummies on the train. The book gives descriptions of the job duties of a copyeditor and a proofreader. It also explains the process and gives examples of copyediting and proofreading. There is a complete listing of all the major proofreaders marks with examples of how they are used. I am finding this very helpful in understanding how to make a document presentable to an editor. The book recommends, Woe Is I, a book on grammar which I have put on hold.

The book had a few interesting things which I had not seen before. There was a section with four different stylesheets from editors which was interesting to look at. The stylesheets set down rules on grammar and design for a particular publisher. I have seen proofreading tests, but not stylesheets.

The book also covers an interesting phenomenon. Most books are edited and proofread completely electronically. Manuscripts are forwarded back and forth by email between the editor, publisher, and author. A lot of proofreaders work from home. Reducing the amount of paper used in making books reduces costs and saves time. Yet, the physical book itself is still mostly a printed object.

Occassionally, you come across an interesting tidbit of information. Google has a define: command which allows you to look up information like a dictionary. I don't use dictionaries that often, unless I am looking up words for someone else. Then I tend to use The American Heritage Dictionary and Merriam Websters 11th Edition. The last dictionary I used was

A few style manuals are suggested. I have the Chicago Manual of Style at home. It is currently in storage in the attic. I tried to read it from front to back, but found it was very boring and hard to read. It was something which you would use as a reference not something to read for entertainment. In contrast, I have Words Into Type, a now long out of print style manual which I found quite enjoyable to read.


shea holliman said...

I like how in english, a lot of the american spellings are different from the british, most times when I spell a word wrong, well, it's actually spelled correctly if I were British

Book Calendar said...

Hmm. I someimtes make the same mistake. They add a lot of u's to their spelling. Colour for example. There is a section on changing books from British english to American english in the Copyediting and Proofreading for Dummies book. They often hire copyeditors to do this.