Monday, August 13, 2007
I'm in the throes of proofreading my Screen essay on the prestige film. Don't get me wrong: it's a gratifying thing to see one's writing in a semblance of its eventual layout. But it has raised a troubled question for me: how do I navigate the vastly different stylistic and punctuation rules of British English? It's not merely an issue of cosmetics or comfort: sentences just don't read the way I think they should. Comma splices and run-ons seem to pop of the page with frightening regularity now. I don't want to resist editorial changes or to be a high-maintenance author; at the same time I want the writing to make sense, and to say basically what I'd intended to stay from the start. It's surprisingly tricky.