Saturday, November 24, 2007

The Engine Room

Just caught wind of another language blog today — in the genre I'm coming to think of as copy-editing blogs. It's The Engine Room and they're putting up some good material with a UK focus. I actually check out a fair number of similar blogs, like Mighty Red Pen or Notes from the Copy Editor for example, and read them with pleasure, even though or maybe because they bring such a different perspective. Copy editors, obviously, are language professionals of another type, and the good ones I've known think about language in interesting and engaging ways. And, by god, can they clean up bad prose.

Given how often I rail about prescriptivists, I'm probably overdue for a refresher on a key point (one beaten to death on the Log and elsewhere): There's no disputing the value of a codified standard language. In real life, I live by the graces of good copy-editors. (And every so often I die by the hand of bad ones.) Just making sure everybody's clear on the distinction between what they do and the often bizarre quest of the peevologists.

Random note: After getting email about "Neuro-linguistic Psychology", I found Google ads on my gmail for NLP therapists. Which phobias should I start with?


mighty red pen said...

Thanks for the link, Mr. Verb. I love your blog so I'm delighted to hear you're an MRP reader as well. The Engine Room and Notes from a CE are two of my fave blogs as well, so it's an honor to be mentioned in the same post.

Mr. Verb said...

Nothing to thank, of course ... I learn a fair bit from you and those others, although I fear it doesn't improve my own writing particularly!