Meet the instructor: Frances Peck Reply

Written by Carl Rosenberg; copy edited by Meagan Kus

On Saturday, April 22, Editors BC will present Frances Peck, who will give a full-day workshop called The Secrets of Syntax. In this workshop, participants will look at syntax from various angles and explore how to shape it for different kinds of texts, styles, and readers.

Frances Peck is a Certified Professional Editor (Hon.) and writer who has worked with words for over 25 years. She prepared the Canadian edition of The St. Martin’s Workbook, a grammar exercise book; co-authored the popular HyperGrammar website; and wrote Peck’s English Pointers, a collection of articles and quizzes available on the Language Portal of Canada. A partner with West Coast Editorial Associates, Frances teaches at Douglas College and UBC and gives workshops across Canada. She is also a sometime blogger and a fiction writer.

Carl Rosenberg, a volunteer on Editors BC’s communications and social media committee, spoke to Frances about her work on language and syntax. 

More…

April 22, 2017: The secrets of syntax Reply

What: Editors BC professional development seminar
When: Saturday, April 22, 2017, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm
Where: Room 810, 8th floor, BCIT Downtown Campus, 555 Seymour Street, Vancouver | map
Cost: $165 for Editors Canada members ($135 early bird), $230 for non-members ($200 early bird), and $100 for student affiliates. Advance registration required. Registration closes April 14; early-bird rates are in effect through March 31.

We’ve all flipped a sentence around, or dismantled it and then recombined it, only to discover better clarity, emphasis, rhythm, or flow. Why does that happen, and how can we become more adept at manipulating word order—or syntax—to improve prose? This seminar looks at syntax from various angles, including how to shape it for different documents, styles, and readers.

More…

Member interview: Margaret Shaw Reply

Written by Frances Peck; copy edited by Karen Barry

Margaret ShawMargaret Shaw is a Coquitlam-based writer and editor of mostly scientific and technical material, ranging from manuals and books, to reports and procedures. Besides EAC, she belongs to Plain Language Association International and the Society for Technical Communication. She holds EAC certifications in structural and stylistic editing and copy editing.

You’re kind of an earth girl, Margaret. Your B.Sc. was half in geology and your M.Sc. was in earth sciences and hydrogeology. What (on earth) led you to editing and writing?
I suppose I came full circle. I wrote my first book in Grade 1, at my teacher’s request. It was called In the Hospital and was a detailed account of having my tonsils out. It was bound with green construction paper folded in two and stapled.

I consider my dad, who was a chemist, to be my first and most important writing teacher, even though he never knowingly taught me anything about writing. He has always been a great natural writer and fantastic at explaining the essence of things simply. My mum, who was a nurse, was the one I asked about spelling. I remember how pleased she seemed as she spelled out words.

More…

Event review: Getting the message across: Clear writing tips with Frances Peck Reply

Written by Amy Haagsma; copy edited by Karen Barry

Review of seminar Getting the Message Across: Clear Writing Tips with Frances Peck (offered by EAC-BC on March 19, 2015).

Frances Peck is a writer, Honorary Certified Professional Editor, and long-time EAC member and volunteer. She has taught at the University of Ottawa, Douglas College, SFU, and UBC; presented seminars for EAC branches across Canada; and delivered training for a number of government and private-sector organizations.

One of Frances’ specialties is editing and rewriting for clarity, making her the perfect choice to teach EAC-BC’s recent half-day seminar, Getting the Message Across: Clear Writing Tips. The seminar focused on techniques to improve clarity in workplace and public documents to better communicate the intended message.

More…

Member interview: Janet Love Morrison Reply

Written by Frances Peck; copy edited by Karen Barry

Janet Love Morrison is a writer, editor, and speaker based in Maple Ridge. Her five books include The Crazy Canucks: Canada’s Legendary Ski Team, winner of the 2009 One Book, One Vancouver award, and the illustrated kids’ book Radar the Rescue Dog.

More…

March 19, 2015: Getting the Message Across: Clear Writing Tips with Frances Peck Reply

What: EAC-BC professional development seminar
When: Thursday, March 19, 2015, 8:30 am – 11:30 am
Where: Library Square Conference Centre, 350 West Georgia Street, Vancouver | map

Workplace documents have one goal: to deliver a message quickly and clearly to a particular audience. But too often that message gets buried by weak organization, wordiness, abstract language, jargon, unhelpful design, and other barriers to readability.

This half-day introduction to clear writing shows you how to remove those barriers and build a document that says what it means. We’ll talk about the all-important reader, including the different types of readers and their varying needs. We’ll cover seven practical techniques for making written documents clearer. We’ll finish with a look at how page layout affects readability. (Detailed agenda below.)

The workshop includes short exercises to help you apply what you learn. You’ll also receive a list of recommended resources.

More…