Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Around the Word

Today's tour of the web takes us from red pens to the White House and beyond...
  • As writers, we've all heard (maybe even starred in) proofreading horror stories. How do you gear up the magnifying glass to spot those slightly misshapen words? Here's help! If you can't hire a professional proofreader, follow journalist Daphne Gray-Grant's ten tips on creating pristine copy. Among other hints, Gray-Grant advises that you print your piece out (or change to a large, whimsical font) and read it backwards. What other proofing pointers do you have from your own experience?  
  • For you news-readers hungry for something to hold onto, here's food for thought. While on her honeymoon, writer and professor Kara Miller found herself holding print newspapers for the first time in a long time. As she leafed through, her eye lingered over unexpected stories and explored untrodden sections. Reading online is cheaper and eco-friendly, but hyperlinks and personalized homepages send us barreling directly to our preferred sections and tend to polarize our opinions. We're curious to hear your thoughts on the pros and cons of online news. How do you avoid over-specialization?
  • Bibliophiles, rejoice! The Wall Street Journal heralds the birth of a dedicated book review in its offshoot The Weekend Journal, to be launched this month. Book reviews are folding around the country, notes The Observer, with The New York Book Review now standing almost alone in the field.
  •  Barack Obama, 44th President, Commander in Chief and...celebrated children's book author? In Of Thee I Sing: A Letter to My Daughters, to be released next month, President Obama celebrates the lives of thirteen inspiring Americans. Drawings by Loren Long, who gave us the lovable blue Little Engine That Could, will harmonize with the President's song. This and The Audacity of Hope comprise two of the three books required by Obama's 2004 contract with Knopf—what do you think his third book will be?

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