EVEN WEIGH BACK in the daze of hieroglyphics…there were copy editors!
When I was a young copy editor (yes, I was young once!), I remember reading:
“The strongest drive in the human soul is not sex, hunger or greed—it is the urge to change someone else’s copy!”
This comic, which I saw on the Facebook pages of follower Missy Thompson, brought all that back in a flash. Thanks, Missy!
THIS CARTOON was sent to me by my friend Karen Geary in Paris, TN. I think she told me where she saw it, but I don’t recall. (Karen follows up with a comment: It was posted on Facebook by Veer).
I suspect most of you will get this. Those of you who don’t may take comfort in knowing you’re not yet typographically twisted.
MARAH RETURNS with another page for your review and comment.
FROM MARAH: This page is one of the first from our new editor over here in Mora. We appreciate your thoughts!
1. I searched through the story for the quote used in the headline. I couldn’t find it.
2. Background in the lead picture is very busy. If possible, I’d have gotten them inside the fence and then posed them with the water slide to one side.
3. Nameplate needs fixing still. Wade has promised to send a photo but I assume other priorities have arisen.
4. The QR Code needs to say more than “Scan me with your smartphone.” As in: where will this take me? Why not package it with the “ONLINE” address somehow?
5. Bottom half of the page leaves me cold. Too many headline fonts. Too much bumping of elements. Better use of negative space and rules between packages would help immeasurably.
6. Bumping of mug shot and display photo at bottom is very distracting. Why no nameline on the mug shot?
7. Typography needs lots of work: Italics make captions a chore to read.
8. Is placing a line of space between paragraphs a new style…or have I just not noticed previously?
9. Text needs to be aligned to baseline grid.
10. Pie contest winner has a telephone pole growing out of the top of his head.
OK…OK…enough from Ed. There’s more to be mentioned here, but let’s leave that up to others. Suffice to say your new editor needs some design training.
FROM GOLDTHWAITE, TX, comes this entry from Steven Bridges, Editor/Publisher of the Goldthwaite Eagle.
Steven offers these details:
“Wanting to go for a more modular design, we used rules and text wrapping to add a little zip to our usual front page. It rained on the day we planned to take a photo at the local swimming pool, so we used cartoon art instead. Everyone seemed to like the change.”
1. I would want to tweak the nameplate (especially the huge-and-very-yellow eagle!).
2. The cartoon makes the lead seem less newsy, less credible. A file foto from an area pool the previous year would have worked.
3. Let’s do away with tint blocks, like the one around the foto at bottom.
What thoughts do you have? Send a comment!