Friday, June 26, 2009

Upbeat lead

Nice lead: I think this is a good lead for a story on the death of Michael Jackson: The King of Pop seemed driven and upbeat in the weeks, even hours, before his death as he rehearsed rigorously for a series of 50 concerts in London that were to begin a late-career comeback.

Why? Upbeat is a perfect description for a singer/dancer/entertainer known as "The King of Pop." It is a bit long, though.

Head(line) hunting: I've heard some great and some cruel headlines when famous people died. People always joked that, when Mickey Mantle died, the headline would be "Mantle Traded To The Angels." The best I've seen was "Good Night, Sweet Prince" when two Shakespearean actors, Lawrence Olivier and John Gielgud, died.

Perhaps the best headline came from the N.Y. Times. It's long — "A Star Idolized and Haunted, Michael Jackson Dies at 50".

Can you do something better?

Today's quote:
You write with ease to show your breeding,
But easy writing’s curst hard reading.

By Richard Brinsley Sheridan (1751–1816)
What does it mean? It seems to mean that you need to work harder to make the reading easier for the reader.

Web sighting: This isn't really about editing or proofreading, but it does involve writing (putting smartaleck captions on pictures). Check out Pundit Kitchen, which features a lot of interesting political photos and your opportunity to put big wheels in their place (behind their backs, of course).

Wrong word: "White has the lightening speed and athleticism." I think the writer was looking for lightning.

Contact: I can be reached at or Also, my Twitter handle is EDITORatWORK.

Entries from The Dog Blog

Blog entries from The Auto Racing Journal
(a book of great stories about the Intimidator)
(the book of great NASCAR stories)

More blog entries by Tom Gillispie

Anecdotes by Tom Gillispie

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