Revising, Editing,Proofing & Feedback Lizabeth A. Walsh, MJE
What to include Similes Metaphors Strong verbs Phrases Clauses Figures, facts, feelings
Similes Dragging herself down the hall like a sullen child, senior Jennifer Jones headed toward Brent Busboom’s first period senior English class, knowing full well she’d be singing karaoke for her classmates, thanks to her snooze bar. Running for their cars as quickly as cockroaches scatter when the lights come on, upperclassmen squeezed every last second of freedom from their newly-shortened lunch period.
Metaphors Prepared for battle in the thin armor of an hour’s worth of cramming, junior Ben Jones unsheathed his pencil from his pocket and began slashing his way through the 100-word vocabulary test. As Christy Larsen returned their first essays of junior year, students winced at the bloodbath of red ink on scarred papers.
Strong Verbs- Active Voice The rule was followed by students. Students followed the rule. Students laughed at the rule. Students disregarded the rule. This year, new rules were implemented. Administrators implemented new rules. Teachers introduced new rules. Students complained about new rules.
PhrasesPrepositional o Students crowded around the mirror in a desperate attempt to purchase the last of the T-shirts.Appositive o Mrs. Walsh, the yearbook adviser, earned her CJE in 2000 and her MJE in 2006.Infinitive o To arrive at the ceremony on time, sophomore Missy Warren had to forego a shower and merely accept a quick change into her Homecoming gown in the back of her parents’ van.Gerund o Swimming and diving attract fewer than 30 students to the pool each year, but those who choose them have the benefit of never worrying about horrible spring weather.Participial o Wounded by an opponent’s cleat, senior Mac Salmon remained in the match until the final buzzer. o Whining about deadlines, yearbook editors rolled their chairs back to the computers and finished proofing the final spreads.
ClausesAdjectives o Senior Maggie Ball, who accepted an internship at Bob’s Big World of Printed Stuff, double checks the index one more time before heading to her unpaid intern position.Adverbs o Whenever they tried to sneak out the back door, Mrs. Edwards’s students heard the buzzer she had attached to the door jamb.Nouns o Whoever earned the title of editor would have to dedicate long hours of work to making the yearbook as perfect as it could be.
AP Style- the biggies ALL- every kind of them Texas & 7 other states are (except reference books, which always spelled out- abbrev the includes yearbooks)- titles are rest indicated with quotation marks Months are abbreviated Jan., instead of italics, which means titles inside quoted material Feb., Mar. (except June and July) use single quotation marks. Dates are written Wed, Apr. 4 Periods (.) & commas (,) (and only appear if needed for always go inside quotation clarification) marks. Money is written $2, not two One-nine, then use 10, 11, 12 dollars. $2 million is for Ordinal numbers first-ninth, everything over $999,999.99 then use 10th, 11th, 12th Time is 7 a.m., not 7:00 a.m. When in doubt, check the stylebook!
Stylistic Suggestions Consider retaining the spelled out class descriptions (freshman, sophomore, junior, senior) because it doesn’t interrupt eye flow for the reader. Retain subject-verb order in attributions “I like pie,” sophomore Susie Smith said. Consider embedding attribution within longer quotes, so everything doesn’t end in said. “I like pie because it’s so yummy,” sophomore Susie Smith said. “My favorite is cherry, but really, I’ll eat almost any flavor.”
What to exclude Anything that can be said about any other year or said by any other person Sentences that begin with A, An, The Adjectives Adverbs that do not “clash” with the verb Sentences beginning with “There is…, There are…, There was…, There were” Fragment and question ledes Opinions and editorializing
Anything anyone else could guess“It was an honor just to be nominated,” every personhas always said about being nominated for some kind ofstudent popularity court.“I have never been the kind of person who wears adress, much less the kind of person who wouldwear a crown, so this came as a huge surprise tome,” senior Megan Winkel said.
Changing an A, An, The sentencesThe mascot ran across the field before doing acartwheel. oBefore executing a cartwheel, the mascot ran 100 yards across the football field.An hour before the match began, the boyschugged a gallon of milk. oWithin an hour of the match’s start time, tennis players chugged a gallon of milk on a dare, giving little attention to the possible outcome of this act.A great way to start your day for testing is witha good breakfast. oResearch indicates that good breakfasts give students an advantage on testing day.
Killing adjectivesUnder a dark, but starry sky, the football field’s new andexpensive lights shone brightly, bathing the field insolid, white light. oWith the stadium’s $40,000 lighting system, fans could see every play on the field.Fluffy down pillows, white down comforters, and crispwhite sheets greeted students when they entered theNew York City Westin Hotel for their first CSPA trip. oDropping their luggage on the floors of their Westin Hotel rooms, students quickly claimed beds and began to make plans for the remainder of their New York City stay.
Choosing adverbs for best effectMrs. Walsh screamed loudly at the students in her secondperiod class, trying to get them to quiet down. oWhispering loudly, Mrs. Walsh threatened to unscrew Steven’s head if his lips moved one more time.Walking slowly, students gradually entered the classroom forstudy hall. oOn the final day of class, a few of the remaining yearbook students took their time, leaving slowly for their summer vacation days as they took one last look around the room that had been their home for the year.
Sentences beginning with “There is…, There are…, There was…, There were”There are 400 students in Mrs. Walsh’s English classes. oMrs. Walsh’s 400 students constitute one-quarter of the entire student body.There was a young lady standing in the corner. oIn the far corner of the gym, a young lady tried to hide herself from her classmates.
Fragments & Question LedesComfy shoes. Bags of Candy. Old yearbooks. Theseitems comprised Liz Walsh’s packing list. oAfter shoving an extra pair of athletic shoes into her overstuffed suitcase, Liz Walsh headed for yearbook camp, where she would hand out candy and old yearbooks as she taught, reducing her luggage’s return trip weight by 20 pounds before the week ended.Did you ever wonder about what goes on at yearbookcamp? To understand yearbook camp, one must attend yearbook camp, and unlike in Vegas, what happens there doesn’t necessarily stay there.
Opinions & EditorializingThe team worked hard to earn a spot in the playoffs. oSoccer players spent over 40 hours in the last month preparing for their playoff opportunity.So, if you’re looking for a good club, join Key Club. oKey Club officers provide members with opportunities to serve the community both directly, by providing assistance at St. Vincent’s shelter for the homeless, and indirectly, with a yearly canned food drive that benefits the Food Pantry in central Reno.
We’ve done the technical stuff… Now what?Pay attention to cadence oRead the piece aloud- does it flow smoothly? It should read easily on the first time by a stranger.Avoid redundancy oMake sure every sentence and lead begins differently from every other sentence.Create alliteration oThe ear likes to hear the similar sounds of cleverly created musicality.Vary the length of sentences and paragraphs oLet people tell the story for you, and you’ll have this pleasant combination of shorter and longer grafs.Balance your sentences oPleasing sentences have a certain symmetry. Look for ways to make the rhythm of the sentence more musical.End with a bang oSometimes another person’s words can be stronger than your own- and this isn’t English class, so don’t be afraid to conclude with a quote, with embedded attribution, of course, or find a way to conclude the story with a short, sweet, single-syllable word.
How to build a Staff ofStrong Writers & Editors Teach what good writing looks like- the process, not just the polished product. Show students that even in the first draft process, they can revise for effect, but that doesn’t mean they are finished revising. Read good writing in class, as a group, at least once a week. Analyze good writing- what elements make it strong? What might you revise? Why? How?
Process for editing/revising Students write stories and captions in Word. Students run steps for doc check & self-edit. Students share on Google Docs. Student editors give private feedback for improvement by inserting comments. Adviser reads through to double check editors’ commentary and corrections…
And then… Students place copy in spread. Spreadsprojected on board (LCD, Smart, Promethean, etc.), volunteer reads copy aloud, and entire group (or half) listen, look, and give feedback. Writer takes notes on changes. Writermakes changes in spread, editors check, adviser double-checks.
And then… Three editors review copy on proofs. Section (Mentor), Copy Ed (Managing Ed), EIC 1- yellow is for AP style & grammar 2- green is for name spelling errors 3- blue is for fact checking concerns 4- pink is for stylistic (voice) concerns (EIC) Writer makes final changes to copy. EIC or adviser does final proof signoff.
Acknowledgements:•Lori Oglesbee, 2010 Yearbook Adviser of the Year•Stephen King (On Writing)•Jack Hart (A Writer’s Coach)
All materials presented… Remain the property and copyright of the various owners of the original works. These yearbook samples were presented at BALFOUR workshops for the benefit of their clients and customers. Please do not alter these presentations. Use of these shows is intended only for individual adviser-to-staff classroom teaching, not for publication or reproduction in any form for any type of presentation at a conference, camp, convention, or gathering of multiple schools’ staffs.