Friday, June 15, 2012

Why We Need Editors

As I would anticipate many of you know, I help maintain the Mage Knights story blog, which link you can find above right next to the Home button. Silver and I draw great enjoyment from maintaining Mage Knights, but on the odd occasion, our writing expertise fails us. Which is why we have readers to correct us, and our unofficial copyeditor Josh to set us straight at times.

The following is a fine example of why every writer needs a copy editor.

On Jun 14, 2012, at 9:54 AM, Joshua wrote:


Of what were you thinking when you actually decided to put a interrogative's preposition at the beginning of the phrase? I mean, I know that "what are you thinking of" or the more colloquial "what are you thinking about" are forbidden by highschool english teachers but, let's be honest, we all know that the rule about not ending sentences with prepositions was made up by John Dryden in 1672.  (He did, by the way, give no explanation or defense of this rule.)  I appreciate Myrrdin's attempt to sound more archaic by avoiding colloquialisms, but with all due respect, fronting prepositions is not and never has been a real rule.  So, i respectfully suggest that you replace the phrase with "What are you thinking of/about" or even with the alternatives such as "What's on your mind" or "what are you pondering?"
Having read your story at 8ish in the morning,

On Jun 14, 2012, at 11:02 AM, Emil wrote:

I appreciate your attention to linguistic detail, Josh, and normally I would defer to your expertise. However, seeing as I, as a generally knowledgeable writer, was not aware of that rule, and that it was apparently made up without reason, and that most readers will not care one way or another aside from the fact that it sounds like Yodaspeak, I will claim creative license to trample the aforementioned rule into the dust in the name of preserving the archiac feel and integrity of the Mage Knights universe. I do, however, appreciate you pointing this out to me, and would pray that you continue to show such extensive expertise far into the future of the blog.

Having eaten Raisin Bran at 8ish your time,


The world of writing rules is a hazy one, especially nowadays in the internet age. Copy editors are needed more than ever to render corrections on a world rife with incorrections. People like Josh keep the world from degrading into an amalgam of unintelligible gibberish and general nonsense; without them, our communications, articles, and novels would be more a trial than a joy to read. So today's post goes out to editors: thank you for the work you do.