June 10, 2010
… Stylebook, that is. As in the brand spanking new Associated Press 2010 Stylebook, which just arrived at my door!
For writers and editors like me, our stylebook is our bible, constantly in arm’s reach whether proofreading an official document for a client or composing a blog post. How do I use it, you ask? Well, in writing this very paragraph, I looked up the term “bible” to confirm that I lowercase it in this instance. (For those of you who are curious, “Bible” is capitalized when referring to the Scriptures in the Old or New Testaments; it is lowercased as a nonreligious term.)
Although I’m sad to retire my old AP Stylebook (2006 version), I’m beyond excited to break in my new one. Sure, I’ll end up highlighting the same entries that always give me pause (essential clauses, nonessential clauses; composition titles; academic degrees [I do a lot of work for educational institutions]), but now I have 100 new and updated entries to pore over and master.
As you can guess, a lot of the new entries are related to social media (e.g., Twitter, blog, text messaging/instant messaging [complete with popular terms like LOL]). One of the updated entries, “website,” is a marked change from the former “Web site”—and a welcome one to me and most editors I know. In fact, the change came, in part, as a result of user feedback to the AP.
Other new entries of note include “Great Recession,” referring to the recession that began in December 2007, “tea party,” defined as “Populist movement opposing Washington political establishment,” and “Bluetooth,” referring to the wireless standard that enables hands-free cell usage.
Now, while you ponder the fact that “bologna” is the sausage or luncheon meat, and “baloney” is foolish or exaggerated talk, I have some fascinating reading to do.