Saturday, January 23, 2010

The Write Style

I recently bought myself another book on style. The editors at Dundurn, the publishers of my up-coming book, Growing Up Ivy, use a combination of their house style guide, The Chicago Manual of Style, and The Canadian Style (Toronto, ON: Dundurn Press, 1997).

It's the latter book that I purchased, in a revised and expanded edition. I have other style books on my reference shelf, as well as books like Eats, Shoots and Leaves, by Jan Truss, a witty approach to punctuation. But this one should help me when I'm working with the editor.

The Canadian Style is designed so that you can quickly access the topics you need. But from time to time, I also pick it up just to read. The chapters include everything from abbreviations to revision & proofreading. There's even a section on frequently misspelled words, although they left out two that I always have trouble with: refrigerator and cemetery.

Do you know your publisher's stand on the use of the serial comma? Do you know whether to write out the numbers 1 to 100? Or how to express exact amounts of money; or how to use punctuation with quotation marks?

It's a good idea good to familiarize yourself with the style book your publisher uses. That way, you can correct many errors in usage before submitting the final manuscript.

Till next time.

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