An easy way to make your editor’s day

May 25, 2011

Want to make your editor happy? Here’s one simple thing you can do that will accomplish just that:

Use hyphens correctly.

How I feel when you use hyphens correctly.

Few people, it seems, realize that when two words become a modifer, they need a hyphen. Even if those words aren’t hyphenated normally. When they modify a noun, the game changes!

That means job search turns into job-search strategies. Working full time becomes full-time work. A party that’s on campus morphs into an on-campus party.

How did I become so nit-picky about this? A persistent and fabulous editor drilled it into my head during one of my first news internships. Failing to add a hyphen when a modifier was involved seemed to be his pet peeve. Now it’s mine.

So learn the rule! Because when you use it correctly, you’re sure to make your editor’s day.

Photo credit: Flickr’s riboassi

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