Tuesday, September 12, 2017

My favorite editing movies

Since this blog is primarily about editing, I knew I needed to round up my favorite editing movies. My problem? There aren’t that many. I guess fewer Hollywood writers are also editors. Nevertheless, I’ve compiled what I’ve seen:



You’ve heard of F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway. You might have heard of Thomas Wolfe. But have you heard of Max Perkins? He’s the editor who saw the potential of these authors and mentored them to success. This movie makes editing almost look painful, with the pages and pages of manuscripts and endless rewrites—unless you love it as much as Max does. Note to authors: Don’t be married to your words. I’m not sure I’d ever spend as much time cutting them as Max did for Tom.


Julie and Julia

Besides giving an inside look at writing, this film provides a sneak peek into the work of another editor, Judith Jones of Knopf (it’s pronounced Kuh-nopff). If only food could win me a book contract... But the best scene with Judith is the one in her office, where she and Julia are trying on book titles. I’m terrible at good titles myself, and I really want to recreate this scene someday for my own book!

Title meetings are a real thing that happens at publishing houses. During my internship at Focus on the Family, I got to sit in on one that finalized the name of a book about C.S. Lewis and Mere Christianity. Picking just the right title isn’t easy, and the meeting wasn’t quick.


Back Page

This one is about newspapers and reporting, but the main character is a newspaper editor. A small-potatoes writer at the Associated Press in the 1930s gets a job at a small paper with a small staff in a small town, but she becomes a big deal fast when she shows local business owners they can’t control her. If I were going to pull a teachable moment from this movie, it would be, “blackmail can solve your problems,” (whatever happened to “all the news that’s fit to print”?) so I’ll just recommend this film for entertainment value.


Shattered Glass

Again, journalism plays a large role here, but this movie gives a detailed and realistic look at the editing process at a reputable magazine—one that will get in big trouble if something is wrong. And maybe that’s part of the irony of this film that I never noticed before: No number of red pen passes from editors in an office will spot the type of deceptions Stephen Glass weaves, if he does it well enough. Sometimes fact checking requires a detailed and thorough examination of what’s being presented. Photos would’ve helped too.

I know there’s more movies out there starring editors (The Devil Wears Prada, Fatal Attraction), but they’re not always about the editing. Which ones do you like?

Thursday, August 31, 2017

My favorite writing movies

The tortured soul trying to beat a bad case of writer’s block into submission. The frustrated has-been desperately trying to breathe fresh life into his words. The free spirit who doesn’t care about people or popularity, just prose. We’ve all seen the stereotypes of writers—and the not-so-stereotypical—played out in movies. Below, I’ll share a few of my favorite films featuring writers, and what I learned from them:

Julie and Julia (2009)

This one gets bonus points; it’s about two writers. And the message in it that can get lost in failed recipes, the enchantment of Paris, and life after thirty is how hard it is to write and how long it takes to write well, especially when you have a full-time job, especially when you don’t have a network of writers around you. But Julia and Julie persevered, because if those real-life characters hadn’t, we wouldn’t have a movie.

What I learned: Keep at it, because you never know how far you’ll go. (Also, having co-authors can be both messy and fun.)


The Ghost Writer (2010)

I confess, I first watched this because it starred Ewan McGregor. But the noir-style suspense and intrigue, combined with a writer’s mundane struggles to write a book of someone else’s stories, kept me hooked. 

What I learned: Think twice before accepting a ghostwriting job for a controversial political figure. But seriously, ghostwriting’s an interesting profession. Never assume that famous figure on the cover wrote their book alone, even if you can’t find another name. To paraphrase one ghostwriter: “The only place your name has to be is on the check.”


The Rewrite (2014)

How do you break the curse of being a one-hit wonder? Hugh Grant learns that it’s about more than the next big sale, and gives at least one full lecture’s worth of writing advice by the time the credits roll. Plus, I’m pretty sure most of us see ourselves in one of his students—the nerd writing thinly-veiled Star Wars fanfic (guilty), the lovebird who clues in her crush through her stories, or the troubled teen with baggage that only comes out as her screenplay plot develops.

What I learned: If your goal is fame, you won’t last long. Find what about writing really makes you passionate.


Inkheart (2008)

I admit this wasn’t a great movie. I admit I went to see it with a friend and might not have otherwise. I admit I never actually read the book this was based on. But one moment captured me forever: when the author of Inkheart, whose characters are escaping into the real world and vice versa, sees his protagonist standing in front of him. The look on his face made me want to do anything, write anything, to experience what he experienced. Such is the power of a good story.

What I learned: Write fiction that will make your fans want to cosplay your characters. A surprisingly good motivator.


Little Women (1994)

This has stayed in my top five favorites out of all movies for most of my life. My family watches it nearly every Christmas. Once in junior high, I declared I was sick of it and decided to go on strike, but I could hear it from my bedroom and succumbed after ten minutes of listening to young Christian Bale.

Anyway, I’ve long related to Jo March and her quest for authorship, right down to her love for absurd adventure pulp stories (remember, Star Wars fanfic?). What published author can’t relate to her romp around the house after getting her first payment for something she wrote? Or her late nights of dreaming and scribbling? Jo gets us.

What I learned: Dont be afraid to chase after your ambitions. Write what’s close to your heart.

What writerly movies inspire or motivate you? What’s something I should add to my list?

(This is part one of three, with my favorites about editing and newspapers to come.)

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Vocabulary quiz: What do these 8 words have in common?

The words below all have something in common, and if you know what it is, you have a clue to this week’s blog post. (Hint: try to guess all the definitions before jumping to the answers.)

1. Malapropism
A) Unintentionally using a wrong but similar-sounding word, often with humorous effect
B) Grabbing the wrong item from the prop table in the middle of a play
C) A gibberish word made up when one cannot think of the correct word to use in a sentence

2. Quixotic
A) Extremely strange; beyond belief
B) Quick to believe made-up stories
C) Idealistic and prone to absurd lengths of chivalry

3. Braggadocio
A) An attempt to impress Italian women
B) A braggart
C) A word that has extra suffixes appended to it to make it sound more impressive

4. Gamp
A) A large, baggy umbrella
B) A piece of plastic tied around one’s head to keep off the rain
C) A special shoe or boot cover worn while riding a horse in rainy or muddy weather

5. Pecksniffian
A) Someone who smells food to see if it’s ready instead of tasting it
B) Haughty; proud
C) Annoyingly hypocritical

6. Panglossian
A) Characterized by talking too much
B) Optimistic beyond belief
C) A magazine with only glossy pages

7. Bunburying
A) Using visiting a made-up person as an excuse to go somewhere or get out of something
B) Baking bread or rolls with a savory or sweet filling in the middle
C) Traveling without a plan or destination in mind

8. Wellerism
A) A transition in a conversation made by saying the word “well . . .” and trailing off
B) Like an old wives’ tale, a piece of inaccurate medical advice, especially one that sounds like a cure-all
C) An expression that pairs a well-known saying with a humorous or ironic take on it

A. This word sounds like it originates with proper Latin roots but actually was made up in the late 1700s. Playwright Richard Sheridan named one of his characters in “The Rivals” Mrs. Malaprop, and she regularly committed the blunders in the definition. Geography became geometry, influence became affluence, and so forth. However, Sheridan started with a French term, “mal a propos,” or inappropriate. Here’s a video with more on malapropisms and a similar concept, “egg-corns.”
Another character known for his malapropisms--before malapropism was even a word.

B. If you guessed this stems from Miguel de Cervantes’ 1605 novel Don Quixote de la Mancha, you’re right, but don’t pronounce it the same way. Quixotic is pronounced “quicks-aw-tic,” while Quixote retains the Spanish “Key-ho-teh.”Merriam-Webster puts the first use of Quixotic at 1718.
Because I had to. (https://xkcd.com/556/)

B. (though a case could be made for A or C ...) Braggadocio was a minor character in Edmund Spenser’s epic The Faerie Queen, the first installment of which was published in 1590. He was basically what the definition says, and the word probably originated from “braggart.” The noun can be used several ways: as a stand-in for a person (“He was a braggadocio”), the description for the bragging done (“To impress, he relied on braggadocio”), or a way to describe the overblown efforts of someone trying to sound proud (“His braggadocio was not convincing”).

A. To be fair, this is listed in the dictionary as a British term, but it’s really fun and on topic (if you’ve got that figured out ...). Mrs. Sarah Gamp, a nurse, was one of many caricatures from the mind of Charles Dickens and captured the public’s imagination in his novel Martin Chuzzlewit. (Here’s a fun, short description of her.) She carried an umbrella that fits the definition, and pretty soon, the umbrella kept her name. The stereotype of her as a nurse also stuck around longer than was beneficial for society.
Image credit: http://www.victorianweb.org/art/illustration/barnard/mc1.html. Illustration by Fred Barnard, scanned by Philip. V Allingham.

C. Going right back to Martin Chuzzlewit, this word derives from Seth Pecksniff, a character trying to appear virtuous while being quite the opposite. According to Merriam-Webster, the term was first used in 1849, only five years after the publication of the novel.

Image credit: http://www.victorianweb.org/art/illustration/phiz/mc/18.html. Illustration by Phiz (Hablot K. Browne). Scanned image by Philip V. Allingham.

B. A is the deceptive answer here, since the root origins of the word are pan, meaning all, and glossa, meaning tongue (think glossary). In fact, Voltaire’s character Dr. Pangloss from the 1759 novel Candide does talk a lot, at the expense of actually doing anything. But he’s also convinced that everything in the world is as it should be, and the evil that occurs is bringing about the best good possible. (This was a controversial theological theory in the day.) Voltaire is satirizing an extreme response to this idea, which is pretending bad things must somehow be good.
Also, I’ve never read Candide, but now I realize I never want to ... it’s weird.

A. This one’s an even tougher sell than gamp, because Merriam-Webster doesn’t list it at all. However, Google will turn up a plethora of resources that do define it, like Wiktionary, Definitions.net, Collins Dictionary, the Free Dictionary, and, of course, Urban Dictionary. Bunbury is a made-up friend of Algernon in Oscar Wilde’s play The Importance of Being Ernest who is constantly sick. Algernon can plead needing to visit Bunbury anytime he wants to escape to another city or avoid an awkward situation. Actually, Ernest is a “Bunbury” as well, made up by the play’s protagonist, Jack. I guess saying bunburying is just more fun.

C. Dickens characters just say the darndest things. Sam Weller, Mr. Pickwick’s servant in The Pickwick Papers (1837), was known for spouting gems like, “It’s over, and can’t be helped, and that’s one consolation, as they alway say in Turkey, ven they cuts the wrong man’s head off (sic).”

By this point, you’ve probably guessed the common denominator of these words—they all originate from the name of a fictional character. There’s a term to describe this—last vocabulary word for the day—eponym. Any place, person, or thing that gives its name to a common or different noun is an eponym. (I’ll just let you browse the full list to get an idea of it.)
The words in my quiz are special because they’re eponymous to fictional characters. (Bunbury holds the record; he’s a fiction of one of the characters in a fictional play.) Some of these are very old, others not at all. Some took a century or more for the definition to become separated from its work of literature, others took less than a decade. Such is the power of fiction, that we’ll coin words based on characteristics of people who don’t even exist.
But we want to believe they exist.
That, I believe, is one of the true marks of a great writer—having characters so distinct that readers remember them by what they say (or how they say it), their mannerisms, and even they accessories they carry. Characters that bleed into the real world because we can picture them talking to us, walking down the street, or standing out in a crowd.

Want to have equally memorable characters? Here are a few tips:

  • Try naming your characters creatively, with roots to real English words or foreign words. Just the name Braggadocio gives you a pretty good idea in an instant of what he’s like.
  • Give them interesting behaviors, quirks, or items. What would cause you to say about someone in the real world, “That person’s a character!”? Characters are, well, characters because they’re larger than life or absurd. Plus, readers can keep characters straight in their heads when they’re tied to concrete items and behaviors.
  • Don’t be afraid to get really out there, dialogue-wise. Everyone talks differently, and people in the real world are memorable when they have an unusual way with words.
  • A caveat here is that many of the above characters aren’t three-dimensional. They’re often memorable because they emphasize a single trait. So you may want your memorable character to be a supporting character, like Gamp or Malaprop.

(Special thanks go to the Merriam-Webster online dictionary. Most of my information came from that site.)

Monday, February 13, 2017

Life update: My recent writing conquests

It’s been a busy couple of months. Here’s what I’ve been up to on the writing/editing side of things:

First, my freelance writing has picked up a bit. My short story “The Opposite of Revenge” appears in this quarter’s issue of Havok magazine. The theme is “literary mutations,” which are spec-fic twists on classic literature, kind of like Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. My story is based on Les Miserables (good movies, great book). You can buy a digital or paper copy of the magazine here.

Also, I was contacted recently by a project manager at Focus on the Family to write a few more devotions for the Adventures in Odyssey Club. I had been writing a several of these monthly on freelance in 2014 and 2015, and since new episodes have come out since then, I was asked to write a few more. (If you’re a fan of AIO, the latest few albums have been excellent. I highly recommend them.)

Finally, I’ve begun a writing relationship with Area of Effect magazine, and my first article for them, about Star Trek and VBS, appears here. I’m really excited to write more nerdy stuff for them.  

My urge to edit is also being met, but through my day job. One of my co-workers who did copyediting work at night recently retired, and I’ve taken over her position. There’s a lot to do, and it seems to never all be done, but I had been doing mostly layout for the past six months since moving to Wooster, so it’s a welcome change. And, my schedule has gone back to being more Monday-Friday, instead of a 7-day rotation.

Another change at work is bringing more uncertainty. The Daily Record here in Wooster, plus four other daily newspapers that were owned by Dix Communications, were recently bought by GateHouse Media. It owns a lot of small newspapers, and bigger ones, like the Columbus Dispatch, and we’re all waiting to see what changes might be in store. 

Unrelated to writing, I joined Planet Fitness in January. I have never enjoyed running more now that I can do it while watching Netflix and YouTube. Plus, some friends and I began a new Dungeons and Dragons campaign. Does killing zombies burn calories too?
Rolling with advantage means you get to roll twice instead of once for a better score. In theory.

Monday, December 26, 2016

I'm a fan: a defense of why I enjoyed Rogue One

I’m not going to dive much into reasons I think Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is empirically a good movie, because I know some people will just disagree with me. I was surprised how many negative reviews and disappointed friends I found in the days after this film came out. And if you’re looking for reviews, you’ll find them everywhere. But they can’t change my mind. And here’s why:
1. I love surprises and first impressions. 
Saying I value first impressions sounds like a bad thing. But I don’t mean to say I make snap judgments of people when I first meet them or believe everything I hear. Maybe it’s better to say I love “first experiences.” I’ll only ride a roller coaster or read a mystery novel for the first time one time, and I prefer to know little about it beforehand to sweeten the journey.
And I hate movie spoilers. Knowing means you’re watching for it, which means you’re distracted from everything else. 
I used to think people have gotten too obsessed recently with hiding and avoiding spoilers. I've changed my mind.

I stopped looking at all entertainment news, interviews, trailers, reveals, IMDb, everything, a month or two before Rogue One came out. I stayed off Facebook a few days before it came out. And without giving away any specifics, the amount of Easter eggs and cameos made my decision well worth it, for my second reason.

2. I’m a Star Wars fan.
True, this means I get to be more critical about the massive movie/book/comic/game empire that is Star Wars. I’ll discuss minutia for hours and complain about the direction Lucasfilm is headed and grieve the retconning of the expanded universe canon. But I also get more excited about Star Wars than non-fans. My standards aren’t higher because I’m a huge nerd; they’re possibly lower because I’ll forgive some flub-ups for the sake of having something else to drool over.
I will say: There were plenty of drool-over moments.
I don’t want my interests to turn me into Ego from Ratatouille: the critic who’s become so critical his taste is impossible to please. I’ll engage thoughtfully with my fandoms (and if you really want a Rogue One review, I’ll be happy to provide it), but I’ll also enjoy them and usually wait a while before digging into plot holes and poor dialogue.

3. I love sci-fi of all types.
This is a response to a more specific criticism of Rogue One—that it doesn’t feel enough like Star Wars. (This might also respond to those who think the movie was too dark or didn’t have good character development.) If this movie was not Star Wars but simply its own story, I would still see it and love it. The planet vistas, the unusual characters, the epic battles—these are all already my thing, and Rogue One does a great job of winning the sci-fi fan’s heart. Compared to this, The Force Awakens was downright uncreative. (See, here I go being critical.)
When screen's big enough, and you're sitting close enough, you almost don't need 3-D. Almost.

So let the critics complain, I say, and let the dissatisfied find something else to watch. Regardless of the reason, I’m going to enjoy Rogue One as much as I can, and I hope you will too.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Book Review - Literally, the Best Language Book Ever by Paul Yeager

Literally, the Best Language Book Ever: Annoying Words and Abused Phrases You Should Never Use Again by Paul Yeager is a red pen proof of the world. A grammar stickler finally airing all the grievances he must put up with to consume information on a daily basis. I’m sure some reading this review go about life the same way, ready to pounce on an improper verb tense or incorrectly phrased cliché. But Yeager is a fanatic. He knows which verbs are misused nouns, he abhors redundancy, and he cares about which idioms make you sound like a hack.

I also have a feeling he grimaces every time he sees his book title; even though it’s brilliant hyperbole, it’s also purposefully wrong, which is worse to editors than scraping your fingers down a chalkboard.
I chuckle nervously every time I see this book title.
The chapters can generally fall into one of three categories: grammar and usage tips to improve writing and editing, phrases to reject in workplace conversation, and things that you just shouldn’t be saying or writing. Each chapter is alphabetized and indexed for easy reference, and each is short enough to be read in one sitting.
Subjects include:

  • Grammar and usage errors. Some basics are covered, like “It is I” vs. “It is me” and the difference between less and fewer.
  • Redundancies. “Déjà vu all over again” isn’t funny anymore. And don’t get me started on “PIN number.”
Image credit: https://www.proofreadnow.com/blog/rescue-your-writing-from-redundancy

  • Verbs that shouldn’t be. You probably know that you shouldn’t “gift” a present to someone, but did you know you really shouldn’t “partner” with him or her either? (Note: Even though I will still use some of these incorrectly, I’m glad to learn them, because I’m not old enough to remember when they originated and I’m too busy to go around reading the dictionary.)
  • Words and phrases that have lost their original strength or meaning.
  • Words and phrases that are illogical.
  • Words and phrases that are too often used in the wrong context. You get the idea here. A lot of things we say don’t say much anymore. “It goes without saying”—but you’ll say it anyway. Something was “of biblical proportions”—really, or are you just out of adjectives? One of the chapters is titled, simply, “It’s All Bad . . . Believe Me.” We should.
  • Business terms that make you sound a few decades outdated or just don’t mean anything.
  • Idioms that are past their expiration date. These are among the more subjective entries, but string them together and you get a replication of 90s sitcom dialogue. An entire chapter of this nature is dedicated to sports clichés.

Granted, some chapters or entries are Yeager’s personal (read: picky) preference; I’ll still say “you guys” to mixed-gender groups of people (hey, I’m from the Midwest). And many terms sound more like Baby Boomer vocabulary than Millennial catchphrases (which, I’m sure Yeager would agree, are also to be avoided). But, what annoys one editor probably annoys others, so this book has value for writing assignments, formal business communication, editorial submissions, and any time your language needs to be on its best behavior.

Professional writers can use this book to make their language less clichéd, more original, and more exact, giving them a better chance at getting published. If your characters say more interesting things than Yeager’s worn-out phrases, they’ll feel more alive, and if you write exactly what you mean instead of resorting to an idiom, editors will be glad they don’t have to edit out a lot of clumsy, ineffective, or incorrect words.

Plus, that title. This book begs to be read.

What’s your favorite editing book? Do you have a writing or editing book you’d like me to review?

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Journalism Lingo, part 3

A long time ago in a couple of blog posts not so far away, I collected and defined some journalism terms that I use on a daily basis. In a year and a half, I've collected a lot more, and many are commonly accepted terms across newsrooms. Many are also design-related, which I use because I lay out pages—a common task for copy editors. Many are still good for writers to know. (You can find my first lists here and here.)

Bad break – Often, word processors hyphenate words for you at the end of a line. The dictionary actually provides a standard letter to break words at, but only some software refers to a dictionary when splitting words. Plus, some proper nouns don’t have a standardized break. For example, when the group ResponsibleOhio was campaigning to legalize marijuana in the 2016 primary election, InDesign kept breaking it ResponsibleO—hio, and I had to keep fixing it, usually with kerning (see part 2) or a soft return (later in this list). NOTE: The standard editing abbreviation for bad break is bb.

Banner – describing something other than a story (see strip) that stretches all the way or most of the way across a page. A banner headline is a very large headline that runs across the top of a page; a banner ad runs the width of a page but is very shallow.

Bastard width/bastard size – a way to describe any column width that’s not a layout’s standard size. (Yes, I still feel awkward saying it. But it’s much better to know what it means ahead of time.) 
See how that bottom article's column widths aren't like the others? It's often done for variety.

Broadsheet – a full-size newspaper page, usually referring to the tall, narrow dimensions of whatever paper you work for.

Call box – see masthead.

Color bar – a gray bar at the bottom of a page, used to check that all four colors are aligned on the printing plates. The “gray” is actually made up of all four printing colors, cyan, yellow, magenta, and black.

Actually an example of an offset color bar. Credit:

Dateline – the location of a story, provided at the beginning of a story. These can be formatted myriad ways—in all caps, bolded, with a dash, with a colon, etc. AP’s official definition of use says a dateline is the location a story was reported from, NOT where the story took place. So if a reporter in Columbus calls a source in Cincinnati about something that happened there, the dateline would be Columbus. But some newspapers just use it for the location of the story anyway. The newspapers I lay out use datelines on obituaries to note the deceased’s most recent city of residence.

Dingbat – a symbol indicating a break in a story. These are most commonly asterisks ( *** ), but can be other symbols. There are whole fonts of them, and hey, it’s just a fun word, especially if you include them when you’re reading out loud.

Flag - see masthead.

Fold/above the fold/below the fold – The fold is the middle line of a sheet of paper—where it’s folded in half. In a newspaper stand (When’s the last time you’ve seen one of those . . . or used one?), only the top half can be seen, so editors and designers prioritize this space as much as they can. You want to make sure the biggest news of the day goes “above the fold.”

Gutter – the white space between columns.

Hard return – see soft return.

Kicker – a short subject header above a headline. It provides context and background for a headline.
Same page, different example. "2016 Ohio School Report Cards" is the kicker. It's more commonly used in sports, however.
KLO/standalone/lines only – All of these can refer to a photo (or a collection of photos) that stands on its own on a page with no story, just a headline and caption. “Lines” is short for cutlines (see part 1), and KLO is short for “kutline only”—apparently it’s easier to say than CLO??

Lede – alternate spelling of lead, as in the lead of a story. (By now, you’re probably catching on that newspapers have some questionable spelling abilities.)

Leg – another word for a column of text in a story.

Marriage – two pages joined together in holy matrimony . . . sort of. If you open up a section of the newspaper and look at which page numbers share the same piece of physical paper, you’ll see that they aren’t always neighbors. Page 2 is married to Page 7 in an 8-page section, and so on.

Masthead – The masthead is not the title of the paper at the top of the front page, unless you work in England. Instead, it’s the box of information usually on an inside page that lists the publishers and editors (and possibly reporters and other staff), along with contact information and advertising information. It also can be called the call box or postal box, though these might contain only contact information. (The technical term for the title of the paper is the nameplate or flag, but I usually mistakenly call it a banner.)

Package – Two or more related stories, plus any photos, graphics, or other information, that are arranged on a page next to, inside, or connected to each other.

Pull quote – an interesting quote from a story set in its own box or frame in larger text, providing a break from the regular text.

Rail – a narrow, vertical column space running down the right or left side of a page. Also called a well.

Refer – This has an alternate pronunciation and definition in newspapers. If you say it as REEfer, you’re talking about a small note that reFERs a reader to a related story on a different page. Don’t give me that look; it’s a useful word.

Rolling deadline – a schedule where various pages are to be finished at different times, instead of a single hard deadline at the end of a production day when everything is due.

Rule – the same thing as a line, often referring to a line dividing two stories.

Soft return – Hitting the shift and enter/return keys at the same time moves your cursor to a new line without the styling of a new paragraph. For example, if hitting enter automatically begins a new paragraph with extra white space, a soft return puts the cursor just one line down (try it). This works in Microsoft Word, InDesign, and most other programs. Just hitting enter is also called a hard return. For more on this, see Wikipedia.

Stet – an editor’s note that means, “Ignore whatever correction I made here. I goofed; it should stay the way it’s printed.”

Basically how stet works.

Strip – referring to the placement of a story that runs the whole way or most of the way across a page at a shallow depth. Used as a verb, it’s an instruction—“Strip that across the top.”

Tabloid/tab – This doesn’t refer (reFER) to seedy gossip magazines, but the size of the page. It’s half the size of whatever a paper’s broadsheet is so it can fit inside the other sections. Special sections like event guides or real estate listings can be tabs.

Tagline – Not to be confused with slogans in advertising, a tagline in a newspaper article is the author information that runs at the end of a story. It can also be called a strapline (but I never hear that used).