My life has revolved around words for as long as I can remember. From the first week or two that I learned how to read, I never stopped. And I read everything, from the Bible to Gone with the Wind, Euripides to Daniel Defoe, Joseph Campbell to Thomas Friedman, and everything else I could get my hands on. I read in Spanish, Italian, and French. I read the dictionary! I fell in love with words, and wanted to know everything I could about them.
The year I spent editing a weekly column for Limmud International meant a lot of time fine-tuning my skills, cross-checking my decisions with various manuals of style and usage, including the guide from The Times of London. (Limmud began in England, and I was the first American to edit their weekly
publication.) The way my brain is wired, I notice when something isn’t right, and I can’t help it. I was born to be The Grammar Police! And just in case I know something is wrong, but not exactly why, I go to my reference library.
For several years now I have been working closely with a few authors, and have felt a tremendous sense of accomplishment in getting their manuscripts ready for publication. I have also continued reading, and I am often dismayed to find a great story that falls apart with a misused word, the wrong homophone, incorrect grammar, the odd typo, or some stray bit of text that is out of place.