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Carol Saller
Carol Saller, a long-time manuscript editor at the University of Chicago Press, is author of THE SUBVERSIVE COPY EDITOR and a contributing editor at THE CHICAGO MANUAL OF STYLE. Her middle-grade historical novel EDDIE'S WAR was a Best Book at Kirkus, Bankstreet, and the Chicago Public Library and a Horn Book recommended verse narrative. Representing THE CHICAGO MANUAL OF STYLE, Carol has have given keynotes, sessions, and workshops at international, national, regional, and local conferences. As author of The Subversive Copy Editor and several children’s books, she has guest lectured for the University of Chicago Graham School’s publishing program and DePaul University’s editing degree and occasionally appear on Chicago’s public television news program Chicago Tonight as well as at writer events, bookstores, panels, webinars, and workshops on writing, editing, and publishing.
Recent Activity
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Today I’m interviewing Jack Hart for Fiction+ at The Chicago Manual of Style’s Shop Talk blog: Jack Hart has spent five decades helping writers succeed, working shoulder-to-shoulder with journalists in newsrooms both big and small and with students at five... Continue reading
Posted Jun 8, 2021 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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I’ve written before to caution copyeditors against scrubbing voice and character out of fiction manuscripts by adhering too closely to a style manual. Each novel or story is unique, of course. Some feature dialect and colloquialisms, and others pretty much... Continue reading
Posted May 22, 2021 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
Carol Saller has shared their blog The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
May 20, 2021
Carol Saller has shared their blog Carol Saller
May 20, 2021
Carol Saller has shared their blog The Subversive Copy Editor
May 20, 2021
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I’m blogging today for Fiction+ at The Chicago Manual of Style’s Shop Talk blog: Recently, I was listening to the audiobook of James McBride’s Deacon King Kong, and at some point it struck me that we’d been in the middle... Continue reading
Posted May 18, 2021 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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Do you sometimes dither over whether to put a comma between two or more adjectives? a polished, spherical stone or a polished spherical stone? a nice, big check or a nice big check? Although the guidelines for deciding at CMOS... Continue reading
Posted Feb 9, 2021 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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When you write a book to send to an agent or editor, you are preparing a manuscript. And even if your ideas, characters, and plot twists are colorful and creative, your manuscript format should not be. Agents and editors almost... Continue reading
Posted Jan 12, 2021 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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Starting a novel is an exceptionally personal affair, so I’m always amazed when someone decides to tell us all the best way to do it. Nonetheless, there are some basic guiding principles a struggling writer might find helpful. If you’ve... Continue reading
Posted Dec 8, 2020 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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I gave Detective MacSwain $200 and a diamond ring worth $1,000 to keep quiet and make it look like suicide. (Dashiell Hammett, Red Harvest, 81) “That’s nice,” the gray-mustached sleuth on my left said. He didn’t sound sincere. . .... Continue reading
Posted Oct 21, 2020 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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In manuscripts of yore (centuries ago), the text would appear in one huge unbroken block. At some point breaks in thought or theme came to be indicated in the line of text with marks of various kinds, which in late... Continue reading
Posted Sep 21, 2020 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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Anyone familiar with the grammar and style rules and guidelines in CMOS knows they come with a lot of qualifiers: normally, in most cases, in running text, in regular prose, depending on the context—I could go on and on. In... Continue reading
Posted Sep 21, 2020 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
Everyone makes mistakes, but if you goof online at your author website or in social media, the potential for ruin these days is downright scary. That doesn’t mean you should hide in fear or shame. Handling a correction or retraction... Continue reading
Posted Jul 14, 2020 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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Your author website probably has a nice banner image, and if you blog, you probably look online for eye-catching artwork to illustrate or decorate your posts or pages. Maybe your About page features a professional headshot or images from book... Continue reading
Posted Jun 16, 2020 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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A great many common abbreviations* behave perfectly well in any fiction or nonfiction context, including dialogue, when the general guidelines in CMOS are observed: Mr., Ms., CEO, p.m., PhD, UFO. Editors should have no quarrel with them, as long as... Continue reading
Posted May 12, 2020 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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Blurbs are quotations of praise that appear on book covers and jackets, in press releases, on author websites, posters, and ads, in social media, and in the unnumbered pages at the beginning of a novel or creative nonfiction book. They... Continue reading
Posted Apr 14, 2020 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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In our Fiction+ series, we set out to help CMOS users adapt Chicago style to creative writing contexts. Sometimes, Chicago’s general guidelines already work just fine; other times, they need a little noodge to sit comfortably on a page of... Continue reading
Posted Mar 10, 2020 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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Editors are never happy. First they throw a fit if you send in a manuscript without page numbers, but once you send them a paginated work, they complain when you try to discuss a sentence on page 67. What’s the... Continue reading
Posted Feb 18, 2020 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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When we think about writing numbers, we tend to think of research papers, financial reports, sports columns, and other quantity-laden nonfiction settings. But novelists and playwrights and poets also puzzle over how to style numbers. Some happily leave such matters... Continue reading
Posted Jan 31, 2020 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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Novelists are sometimes urged to eliminate the past-perfect tense from their sentences, and copyeditors are sometimes trained to search out those auxiliary “hads” and lop them off from their verbs. What exactly is the past perfect? And what’s wrong with... Continue reading
Posted Dec 17, 2019 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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Short answer: Yes. Now and then, a writer or editor asks our online Q&A whether mentioning a brand name in a work of fiction requires permission or the addition of the trademark (™) or registered (®) symbol. Fortunately, in works... Continue reading
Posted Nov 19, 2019 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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Recently I read through a book to make notes for a professional voice actor who would be reading it for an audiobook production. Luckily, she turned out to be a genius at reading my mind and dodging most of the... Continue reading
Posted Oct 15, 2019 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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The other day, I ran across this line in a recent novel by a best-selling American writer (key words are disguised): His disposition warmed faster than did the gradually dawning day. I couldn’t help wondering: Did the writer write it... Continue reading
Posted Sep 17, 2019 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
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A few months ago in a conference session, a group of novelists digressed into good-natured complaints about being copyedited. One writer drew a lot of laughs saying, “I mean, I got A’s in English! I know where the freaking commas go!”* Others nodded in recognition and comradery. I bit my tongue. Continue reading
Posted Aug 8, 2019 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog
In novels and stories and other creative works, words spoken by a character are normally set off from the narrative with quotation marks, and the speaker is identified in the run of text by tags like “she said.” This is... Continue reading
Posted Jul 9, 2019 at The Subversive Copy Editor Blog