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Grammar Girl popular, copy editor angry, and clichés bad

Here’s a roundup of some grammar-related links.

  • Grammar Girl’s Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing—Possibly the most amazing story I’ve encountered: An editor named Mignon Fogarty created a podcast about grammar and, as CNN describes in ‘Grammar Girl’ a quick and dirty success, it’s one of the most popular podcasts on iTunes. Who knew the masses wanted to learn about semicolons? (Obviously, I wish I had that foresight.) I’m curious as to how Fogarty promoted her podcast though; if she tires of editing, she probably could have a career in marketing. (Via Digg.)
  • City Paper Copy Editor Angry, Angry, Angry—DCist details a disgruntled copy editor’s diatribe directed at his superiors’ demand that he use a serial comma (the comma before “and” in a list of three or more items). I disagree with Andrew Beaujon and the Associated Press about not using the serial comma. Punctuation’s purpose is to clarify. The serial comma does just that.
  • Cliché Finder—I do agree with the Associated Press, however, about clichés; they stink worse than Limburger. To look for clichés in your writing, cut and paste your text into this website and it will highlight phrases that the Associated Press deems hackneyed. (Via Lifehacker.)

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