TEC Blog

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Free to Read? Let's Not Take it for Granted

Books And Reading

  The Book and Periodical Council's Freedom to Read Week, beyond simply being an annual event that showcases and remembers banned books, is an excellent time to consider the merits, or lack thereof, of broadly applied censorship. Last week, as we sat in the office doing exactly that, we fell to wondering how many banned or challenged books we had read or might even have on our bookshelves at home....

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Celebrating Freedom to Read Week

Event

Next week, from February 26 to March 4, we will be observing a very important event in Canadian culture: Freedom to Read Week. Freedom to Read Week is a project run by the Book and Periodical Council (BPC), which is an umbrella organization for Canadian associations that are or whose members are primarily involved with the writing, editing, translating publishing, producing, distributing, lending, marketing, reading, and selling of written words.   More...

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Have Questions? Book a 15-Minute Complimentary Consult with Our Senior Editor

Editing

  We at TEC welcome phone calls from our potential clients looking for guidance about the editing process and the cost of editing. When we receive calls during our business hours (10 to 6, Monday to Friday), we try to provide as much information as possible but do not always have the time for a long conversation. Unfortunately, if the office is busy, we may have to keep the...

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Face-to-Face Business Networking Tips for Editors

Event

  Recently The Editing Company team participated in the "How to Meet People in a Room Full of Strangers" webinar hosted by Editors Canada. Cheryl Scoffield, the presenter, is a networking coach who shared tips on a number of different strategies by which to meet and follow up with clients and business contacts. Her key piece of advice: "Take action!"   Attending the Networking Event This call to action refers to, among...

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Revisiting Transitions: What They Are and How To Use Them

Writing

Well, it's February 2017! We're solidly in Canadian winter, but we'll also be transitioning into spring soon (we can hope). In the spirit of great transitions, we've decided to revisit this great post about proper use of transitions in writing! We hope it helps you.   While drafting the February edition of the TEC newsletter, I found myself flipping through Beth's collection of Editorial Eye back issues, searching for inspiration for our...

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The Book Is Dead! Long Live the Book!

Book Reviews

A Review of The Book: A Cover-to-Cover Exploration of the Most Powerful Object of Our Time by Keith Houston     Life in the Digital Lane It doesn't really matter where you go today, whether you're riding the subway, sitting in a coffee shop, or crossing the street, it seems that almost everyone's eyes are riveted to the screen of some device or another. Texts, emails, games, movies, TV shows . ...

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Words of the Year and Where They Come From

Language & Editing

        What do the words Y2K, plutoed, tweet, e-, they, and bailout have in common?   Simple. They have all, at one point, been named as "Words of the Year. " You may have noticed this tradition, occurring around the end of each year. Dictionaries and websites come out with their idea of what word best represents the past year. Some of the words of...

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An Editor’s New Year’s Reading Resolutions

Books And Reading

The new year is a time for reflection on the past year: what you did, how you grew, and what you learned. It's also a time to reflect on the coming year and what you'd like to achieve. New Year's resolutions are big -- look at any store catalogue in January, and you'll see exercise equipment and accessories and kitchen appliances for making healthy food for sale in...

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The Editor’s Answer to Holiday Withdrawal

Office Happenings

    The holiday season has ended, and, after countless glasses of eggnog, mulled wine, and holiday-themed beer, many revelers are happy to trade in their wine glasses for water glasses. But, every year there's a festive contingent who can't bear the holidays' end. These hardy folk who suffer from party withdrawal in January should be happy to read about the trials and triumphs involved in assembling a functional cocktail...

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TEC Editors Celebrate The Week of Indulgences

Office Happenings / Social Media & Community

We at TEC have launched a new event this Holiday Season. Instead of going out for lunch or dinner, we decided we would enjoy a full week of delicious baked goods, wines, eggnog with liqueurs, and hot toddies. We are calling this festive fair, The Week of Indulgences. In this blog, we share with you our buffet of delectable treats. But First, A Little History Indulgences, as it...

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Confounding Confusables, Part II

Usage

  It sometimes seems like there is a never-ending supply of words that are confusing in one way or another! There are homonyms, synonyms, words that are one letter off in spelling but couldn't be more different, and words that many people argue are not words at all. Every time I look up a new set of "confusables," I learn something new and interesting. I hope that you have...

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How to Customize the Page Numbers of Your Document

Editing & Technologies

An author recently asked me how she could keep the page numbers in her document from appearing on the title page. She didn't want the actual numbering to start until after her table of contents and introduction.   When we open a book, regular page numbering usually begins after the front matter (preface, table of contents, dedication, epigraph). And (especially in academic documents) there is numbering in the...

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Crossing the Pond: One Editor’s Transition from Canada to the UK

Language & Editing

  The past few years in Toronto have been very eventful for me: I've defended my PhD thesis, got married, started my freelance editing career, and had a baby! As it turns out, the adventure isn't ending there. In the New Year, my family and I will be crossing the Atlantic to move to the UK.   In addition to getting used to driving on the left side of the road,...

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Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Punctuation* (*But Were Afraid to Ask): A Review of Shady Characters: The Secret Life of Punctuation, Symbols & Other Typographical Marks by Keith Houston

Book Reviews

  Like so many projects,* it started out innocently enough: a book recommendation, interest piqued by a mark recurring throughout the text, a definition that "invited more questions than it answered. " That's all it took for Keith Houston† to plunge headlong and gleefully into a study of punctuation. The result? His 2013 book Shady Characters: The Secret Life of Punctuation, Symbols & Other Typographical Marks.     Wide-Ranging in...

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7 Tips for Detecting Canadian Business Editorial Style

Writing / Writers Support Group

  Imagine you have been asked to write an article for the Rotman Management, the Magazine of the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto. You want the writing to be clear and concise, and you want your punctuation and spelling to be in the publication's style. Perhaps the website doesn't offer a detailed style guide, so what should you do? You can pick up a copy...

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All Right, All Right, Alright: How to Use Three More Confusing Word Pairings

Usage

  In the TEC office this month, we have been discussing a number of words and phrases that are easily confused and/or misused. So, for our blog this week, we thought we would explain three tricky word pairings, and we hope you find them helpful. For yet another explanation of two word pairings, check out our October newsletter.   Better than / more than / over This set of words is...

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“G’wan, B’y”: A Primer on Cape Breton English

Language & Editing

Earlier this month, I had the pleasure of introducing my husband and my 7-month-old son to the lovely island of Cape Breton, where my parents grew up. I remember my many childhood trips “out east” fondly, and I relished re-living the experience: crossing the Canso Causeway, driving the Cabot Trail, and looking out over the Great Bras d’Or.   Besides these, one of my favourite things about Cape Breton is...

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A TEC Review of Zoe Whittall’s The Best Kind of People

Book Reviews

Zoe Whittall is the award-winning author of four novels and three books of poetry and was TEC's sponsored author at this year's Word On The Street. Her latest novel, The Best Kind of People (Anansi, 2016), is on the short list for this year's Giller Prize.  It provides a fresh take on one of the most difficult and controversial criminal and social challenges of the century. Her...

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4 Tips for Using the Em-dash and En-dash and Finding Them on Your Keyboard

Usage

  As a keen-eyed reader, you have no doubt noticed that those little horizontal lines between words and numbers come in varying lengths. As a keen-eyed typist, you'll also have noticed that your keyboard is equipped with only one key: the hyphen/minus key. And you may have observed that sometimes when you type in two hyphens to set off an interjection -- because you just know that a simple hyphen isn't up to...

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A Halloween Word Treat from The Editing Company

Language & Editing

Halloween fast approaches, and you may have noticed pumpkins and scarecrows appearing on your neighbours’ stoops, and ravaged racks of costumes popping up in stores. I certainly have my decorations up already—black cats, broomsticks, and skeletons, oh my! This week, we thought we’d enlighten you on some fun Halloween etymology in a post by former TEC editor Mary Ann! ***** Mid-October is that wonderful time of year when the air takes on...

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TEC Trick: How to Personalize Your Edits in Track Changes

Editing & Technologies

Editing using Microsoft Word’s Track Changes function is a fairly standard practice today, and it’s easy to see why—it’s neater, faster, and easier for authors to see what changes you’ve made. Using Track Changes also gives authors a level of control over what changes are (or aren’t) made to their work.   However, Track Changes comes with its own set of issues as well. One of those issues...

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Tidying-Up Your Academic Writing: The Magic of the Reverse Outline

Editing

Could your academic writing use a good de-cluttering?   While doing structural editing for a client—especially with graduate students’ theses or dissertations—I’ve often found myself using the same little trick when faced with overwhelming walls of meandering academic text. Essentially, this trick involves using MS Word’s comments feature to reduce these huge swathes of text into tiny, bite-sized tags, and then dealing exclusively with these tags, rather than the text...

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7 Tips for Detecting Business Editorial Style

Writing

Have you ever sat down to write a business article for a journal or a magazine and wondered what the editorial style of the publication was? Perhaps the website doesn't offer a detailed style guide and you know how important it is to punctuate properly or to capitalize key words. In this blog, I describe my detective-like approach to identifying the editorial style of a business magazine or journal....

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TEC’s Tips for Editing with Track Changes: An Introduction

Editing & Technologies

For most editors today, the chance to work some editorial magic on a hard-copy manuscript is not one that comes by very often. For those who might not be so familiar with publishing lingo, hard copy just means an actual physical copy of the manuscript, often in the page proofs stage of the publishing process (printouts of the already designed and typeset book). Before the advent of digital...

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