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Two Dozen Lessons from an Editor [Paperback]

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Item description for Two Dozen Lessons from an Editor by Jim Woods...

With an introduction by publisher Eric Bollinger of McKenna Publishing Group offering tips to would-be authors on how to approach agents and publishers so your writing will sell, TWO DOZEN LESSONS FROM AN EDITOR is a valuable tool for writers. Jim Woods' book is designed, by use of 34 examples and referral to the author's personal experiences as both editor and author, to help writers produce manuscripts less likely to be rejected prematurely by publishers and their acquisition agents.

Subjects covered, at times with tongue-in-cheek humor, include: Abbreviations, Capitalization, Clarity, Continuity, Dialogue, Italics, Modifiers, Narrative, Prepositions, Punctuation, Rules, and more.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   136
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.48" Width: 5.6" Height: 0.34"
Weight:   0.39 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Oct 30, 2002
Publisher   McKenna Publishing Group
ISBN  1932172009  
ISBN13  9781932172003  

Availability  0 units.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Reference > General
2Books > Subjects > Reference > Writing > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Two Dozen Lessons from an Editor?

Brief, Lame, Unrewarding  Apr 14, 2006
A likely more fruitful use of your money and time is "The Elements of Style" by Strunk and White.
Two dozen helpful lessons for wanna be writers   Sep 3, 2004
My knowledge of English grammar is limited to the distinction between dependent and independent causes. I learned nothing in school about grammar because you only had to go up and diagram sentences on the board if you go them wrong and I did not get them wrong because I was reading at a third grade level in kindergarten and picked up the rules of the English language by osmosis from reading a whole lot of books. I could write a correct sentence and I could turn an incorrect sentence into a correct one, but I could not explain to you the whys and wherefores with regards to parts of sentences, rules of punctuation, or anything else.

But now I am thinking of actually publishing a book and since I teach composition the idea of being caught in public with some sort of mistake of grammar, punctuation, or anything else would be rather embarrassing. So it was serendipity that I was sent a copy of "Two Dozen Lessons from an Editor" by Jim Woods because this is exactly the sort of book somebody like me needs written exactly in the manner that I want such a book to be written, which is to say, direct and to the point. Woods learned the value of concise advice from Pearlman and Pearlman's "Guide to Rapid Revision" and, of course, Strunk and White's "The Elements of Style."

"Two Dozen Lessons From An Editor" is written specifically to provide advice to writers so that when they send a manuscript to a book publishing house or a literary agent that they do not fall prey to the Ziegfeld Rule. Now, this is a rule that I made up, so I get the credit, that says: "People who are evaluating a lot of things will take the first opportunity to vote 'no' on you so they can move on to the next evaluation." The title comes from all those bits you have seen where people are auditioning and after two notes they are told "Thank you!" (There is a good example of this in film version of "The Producers"). I always think of it being Florence Ziegfeld out there in the audience pulling the plug.

Wood makes a point in his "Introduction to the Real World of Publishing" that if you do not know the basic rules of the game that you are going to be hammered with the dreaded "summary rejection." The second half of the intro is written by Eric Bollinger, a literary agent, who lays out most of those basic rules for submitting a manuscript. Then Wood gets to his two-dozen lessons and takes just under 100 pages to get them across. The topics consist of abbreviations, capitalization, clarity, continuity, dialogue, homonyms, italics, languages, me/myself/I, modifiers, narrative, political correctness, prepositions, punctuation, sentence length, states right, verb agreement, who and whom, widows, editing language, and editors.

True, that did not add up to twenty-four, but there are a lot of types of punctuation and it is not like there is only one lesson per chapter. For each Woods explains the principle, provides a variety of examples, and reinforces the point with some final "Rules to Remember." Once you have read the book going back to look over those rules is a nice and easy way of reinforcing the lessons. It is not like most of these lessons are going to be news to anyone, even if you have not thought about them in just these terms. But the whole point here is to remind you of the right way of doing these things because if you are trying to get a manuscript published they are going to be way more important than they ever were standing in front of a blackboard (remember those?) back in grade school.
Quick, Easy, Useful  Jul 5, 2004
This little reference book is all you need to have next to your computer during your next writing project to help you get it right. It's not at all complicated, but simple and to the point. Very useful tool and I highly recommend.
Informative and fun  Apr 21, 2004
This is really a wonderful book...a learning tool, but a fun read as well. How oftern do you find that?

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