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Line by Line: How to Edit Your Own Writing [Paperback]

Claire Kehrwald Cook
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 18.95
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Book Description

June 30 1986 Edition 001
The essential guide for all writers. With over 700 examples of original and edited sentences, this book provides information about editing techniques, grammar, and usage for every writer from the student to the published author.

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Line by Line: How to Edit Your Own Writing + On Writing Well 30th Anniversary Edition: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction + Keys to Great Writing
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Product Description

From Library Journal

see Achtert, Walter S. & Joseph Gibaldi. The MLA Style Manual.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

After earning her M.A. in English literature, Claire Kehrwald Cook taught English Composition fro three years at a midwestern university before she went into publishing. For the next eight years she worked for a major book company, rewriting problem manuscripts in the trade, business, and college departments. Since 1976 she has worked at the Modern Language Association, where she enjoys styling literary essays considered worthy of painstaking editorial efforts.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you write, you should read this book. May 11 2001
Format:Paperback
This book is fantastic. It's only about 200 pages, but densely packed with useful information, and every single page deserves careful study. The glossary of commonly confused words at the end is worth 10$ all by itself.
This is not a grammar book (though there is an appendix that gives an overview of English grammar). It is a book designed to improve your writing. It helps you make solid decisions about sentence structure, placing punctuation, and choosing the right words. This book can help guide you through some of the thorniest and most subjective aspects of writing English.
One of the neatest things about this book is that, in addition to the copious examples, the text itself serves as an example of excellent writing. Perhaps the major drawback is that after reading this book, you will end up being much more critical of the writing you encounter!
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, but.... Aug. 8 2001
Format:Paperback
I think my Four Stars are misleading. It is worth Five, if you account for the price and market of the book.
"Line by Line : How to Improve Your Own Writing" provides solid information on editing your own writing and therefore, improving your writing for professionals needs, but it doesn't meet my needs as a communications professional. Writers, in general, will find this a worthy tome, but as a professional copy editing my coworkers and clients I think you'll find this a bit limited in scope.
For the price, "Line by Line : How to Improve Your Own Writing" can't be beat, but I recommend spending a few more dollars on a more thorough text. Check out, instead, an Associated Press Manual of Style and far more meatier text, like "Copy Editing For Professionals" by Rooney and Witte. You'll pay many times more the price, but in the long haul, you'll be glad you did.
I recommend "Line by Line : How to Improve Your Own Writing" but with reservations.
Anthony Trendl
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential guide to revising one's own writing Sept. 19 1997
Format:Paperback
Absolutely fabulous work designed to help you edit your own writing. It's that perspective that distinguishes Line by Line from anything else. What should you look for in revising your sentences. What is good grammatical structure, proper punctuation, etc. The book should achieve the status of a classic -- it is that good
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book changed my life! July 18 1998
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
In 1985 I was a consultant and had to write a report on my findings for a client. I knew that my writing was not all that good, and since I was being paid a considerable sum to write the report I felt it should be written well.
Just at that time an ad in the New Yorker magazine caught my eye. It showed two columns side by side, one, the length of the page, the other, a quarter of the page. I read the ad and sure enough the first column was just like my writing, the second was crisp, to the point, and much more interesting to read. The headline said something to the effect of "how to take the first and turn it into the second".
I ordered the book and read it immediately. The first three chapters excited me so, I could hardly contain myself. It explained so clearly how I had to think about what I was writing, I felt I saw the light.
From that day on I took a whole different view of writing. It turned a task that I usually dreaded into something that I no! w love. Not that I am a great writer, but I feel confident that I can express myself well in my business and personal life. I feel that what I write is clear and easy to read. This has been very valuable to me as a businessman. I have written marketing material, technical manuals, company communications, and customer letters. Without this skill I know I would not have been nearly as successful and would have missed out on a great pleasure in life.
Well, I gave the book to my daughter when she went to college and I lost touch with it. A few years ago I wanted to locate it again but didn't know the title or author. The other day I suddenly got the idea that Amazon.com might help me find it. All I remembered was the year I saw the ad for the book and that a woman wrote it.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My favorite book on editing. July 13 1998
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
As an editor, I have shelves of books on the subject. This book remains my favorite. Once you get bored with editing books that read like a high school grammer, check this book out. It brings you to a more refined level of editing.
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