Walking to demonstrate the ideas of Jane Jacobs

July 18, 2011

I’m writing these words in Toronto on the corner of Brunswick and Bloor from the patio of Future Café, for more than 25 years a favourite haunt of students and impoverished artists. This area has been filled with bookstores, ethnic restaurants and cafés since the 1960s. A busker with a violin is playing Celtic music [...]

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How to make documents readable in eight steps

April 19, 2011

When I heard about a one-day seminar on “Eight Step Editing,” a systematic way to make documents more readable, I signed up immediately. The seminar was offered through the Ottawa area chapter of the Editors’ Association of Canada (EAC). The concept resonated with me. When I was an editor of an international magazine, I always [...]

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Plain language is not a “dumbing down”

March 24, 2011

If writers and editors use plain language, they are more likely to connect with their readers, according to Debra Huron. Huron, a trainer in plain language usage, faced an engaged audience at a local meeting of the Editors’ Association of Canada in Ottawa recently. A key message of Huron’s was that plain language editing was [...]

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Getting sorted

March 8, 2011

There was a buzz recently on the email discussion group of the Editors Association of Canada when one member asked the group what “I’ll get you sorted” meant. Soon someone posted the answer: it was British English for “I’ll straighten you out.” Another editor had identified it from an episode he’d seen of the UK [...]

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