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Event review: The Secrets of Syntax by Frances Peck

Written by Eva van Emden; copy edited by Rebecca A. Coates

On April 22, a roomful of editors got together to talk about syntax—the order of words in a sentence. This may seem like an obscure topic to spend a day thinking about, but consider how many memorable sayings stick in your mind because of a magic combination of word order, rhythm, and repetition. Would we be able to quote the sentence “Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country” if it didn’t use rhythm and repetition—syntactic elements—so effectively?

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Meet the instructor: Joy Gugeler

Written by Carl Rosenberg; copy edited by Maggie Clark

On Saturday, May 27, Editors BC will present Joy Gugeler, who will give a six-hour seminar on structurally editing literary fiction. In this seminar, participants will learn how to understand reader expectations, work with authors, and assess and structurally edit fiction.

Joy has more than 25 years’ experience as an acquiring and substantive editor, including acquiring and editing over 80 books for Beach Holme Publishing, Raincoast Books, and ECW Press. She has also worked as editor-in-chief for three online magazines and as an editorial board member for Arc Poetry, Quarry, Portal, and Room publications. Currently, she edits the Ralph Gustafson Distinguished Poet’s Lecture Series and up to 10 titles annually for her freelance firm, Chameleon Consulting.

Joy teaches editing in Ryerson University’s Certificate in Publishing program and SFU’s Master of Publishing program and summer publishing workshops, and at Vancouver Island University. She holds a Bachelor of Journalism and a master’s degree in Canadian studies from Carleton University, and is completing a PhD in communications at SFU.

Carl Rosenberg, a volunteer on Editors BC’s communications and social media committee, talked to Joy about her work and her advice on the intricacies of editing fiction.

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May 17, 2017: Season-end wine and cheese, executive elections, and book swap

What: Editors BC monthly meeting
When: Wednesday, May 17, 2017, 7:00 pm (elections begin at 7:30 pm)
Where: Welch Room, 4th floor, YWCA Health + Fitness Centre, 535 Hornby Street, Vancouver | map
Cost: Free for Editors Canada members, non-members, and student affiliates

Summer is coming! Join us in winding down the Editors BC 2016–17 season with a wine and cheese social. We’ll also be electing members of next year’s executive (see below for more information) and having a book swap! Bring along any books you’re finished with and exchange them for others at the book exchange table. Summer reading, here we come!

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Introducing editorsbc.blog!

West Coast Editor has joined the .blog community! Please visit our new site at editorsbc.blog, and subscribe to receive updates using the form at the bottom of the sidebar (see the screenshot to the right for details; click to enlarge).

Important: please note that if you were previously subscribed to westcoasteditor.com, you will need to resubscribe to editorsbc.blog. We apologize for the inconvenience.

Please contact Amy Haagsma with any questions.

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May 27, 2017: Literary Architecture: Structurally Editing Fiction

What: Editors BC professional development seminar
When: Saturday, May 27, 2017, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm
Where: Room 810, 8th floor, BCIT Downtown Campus, 555 Seymour Street, Vancouver | map
Cost: $165 for Editors Canada members ($135 early bird), $230 for non-members ($200 early bird), and $100 for student affiliates. Advance registration required. Registration closes May 19; early-bird rates are in effect through May 5.

Sometimes we imagine fiction as arriving at the publisher in a near-perfect form, ready for publishing. In fact, fiction undergoes as rigorous an edit as non-fiction, and often is signed more for its potential than its readiness. Respecting the originality of the author’s voice and work, while still serving all parties with a sensitive critique, is a delicate balance.

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Meet the instructor: Frances Peck

Written by Carl Rosenberg; copy edited by Meagan Kus

On Saturday, April 22, Editors BC will present Frances Peck, who will give a full-day workshop called The Secrets of Syntax. In this workshop, participants will look at syntax from various angles and explore how to shape it for different kinds of texts, styles, and readers.

Frances Peck is a Certified Professional Editor (Hon.) and writer who has worked with words for over 25 years. She prepared the Canadian edition of The St. Martin’s Workbook, a grammar exercise book; co-authored the popular HyperGrammar website; and wrote Peck’s English Pointers, a collection of articles and quizzes available on the Language Portal of Canada. A partner with West Coast Editorial Associates, Frances teaches at Douglas College and UBC and gives workshops across Canada. She is also a sometime blogger and a fiction writer.

Carl Rosenberg, a volunteer on Editors BC’s communications and social media committee, spoke to Frances about her work on language and syntax. 

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