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Editor's Notes, June 2, 2004 --Punctuation, a best-seller
June 02, 2004

"...pause a moment, dear reader,
and imagine this page of deathless prose,
the one you're reading,
without punctuation."
--Frank McCourt

Writer and editor Lynn Truss passed an incorrectly punctuated sign and "something deep inside (her) snapped; snapped with that melancholy sound you hear in Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard, like a far-off cable breaking in a mine-shaft," and she wrote a book on puncuation. To her amazement Eats, Shoots & Leaves sold over 500,000 copies in Great Britain. Now it is taking North America by storm as well.

I have always valued the precision punctuation brings to written English. Lynn Truss highlights the pure beauty of those little black squiggles that dance between the words.

I bought her book immediately after hearing an interview on CBC radio. Her sense of humor was so engaging I couldn't resist reading what she had written.

Her book is so much more than humorous!

She explains the history of each punctuation mark, exposes the debates writers and grammarians have had in the past, and best of all for me, gives examples of excellent writing where puncuation works hard for its living.

Like all excellent performance, to the unitiated good writing apprears effortless. But writing that has every word and punctuation mark in the best possible place is anything but effortless. My writing and my editing will be better because I have this chubby little book on my desk.

When I checked Amazon today, both the American and Canadian versions were offered at a 40% discount. Take advantage of the low price and treat yourself to an in depth look at punctuation given with wit and humor.

Eats, Shoots & Leaves at

Eats, Shoots & Leaves at

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