Re: what to look for in a Tech Editor

Subject: Re: what to look for in a Tech Editor
From: "Mike O." <obie1121 -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 6 May 2003 08:31:46 -0700 (PDT)

Dick Margulis wrote:
> Formal grammar learned from an old battle-axe in junior high or high

Unfortunately Dick is right. Most people seem to think that English
majors must be experts on English. But in an American university, the
study of 'English' means 'English literature.' Which is valuable in its
own way, but not for learning the formalities of the English language.
If you want to study the English language, you are pretty much on your
own, even in the best schools.

I was lucky to meet my particular battle-axe in the seventh grade, who
I continue to have mixed feelings about. She taught us to parse
sentences, and forced us to memorize all the prepositions in
alphabetical order "...before behind below beneath beside between

> This probably means the candidate is over 50.

I'd grant an exception to people who studied a non-English language.
Specifically, a Romance or Germanic language, or both. In the US, the
best teaching of formal grammar actually occurs in foreign language
classes, not in the English curriculum.

I bet the best textbooks on English grammar are not written in English,
but are written for non-English speakers wishing to learn English.

> correct accents on the word résumé.

Aux Etats-Unis on dit 'resume.'

Mike O.

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