Last week Tansa was a sponsor at the American Copy Editors Society conference in New Orleans. Over 350 copy editors attended the three-day event, which offered in-depth sessions on everything from financial editing, headline writing, “the nuts and bolts of punctuation” and dealing with “(non) writers.” The conference also covered many of the modern hurdles facing today’s word police, such as writing for social media and avoiding burnout.
Copy editors at newspapers as well as at other publishers face a growing number of challenges in today’s rapid-distribution world. Journalists, web editors, graphic artists are producing more content today than ever before … and the copy editors have to clean it up and improve upon it when needed.
It was heartwarming to see so many professional editors converge in one place sharing their knowledge and the skills of their craft with their fellow SemiColonites (if you were there, you’ll understand the reference). Attendees included fledgling editors still practicing and honing their skills at their college paper, to some of the most respected names in the wordsmith industry, such as Merrill Perlman and Bill Connolly, both formerly oversaw The New York Times’ copy desk.
Mr. Connolly (seems appropriate to use NYT style), who is stepping down from the ACES executive committee, was honored with a lifetime achievement award for his years of dedication and inspiration to ACES since its inception back in 1997. Other awards and accolades were offered during the events’ banquet ceremony hosted by keynote speaker Roy Peter Clark of the Poynter Institute. Such an award went to Kim Profant of The Chicago Tribune, who received the 2011 Robinson Prize, which recognizes “substantial contributions to the craft of copy editing and excellence in overall copy-editing skills.”
As this was our first official year at the event, we couldn’t be happier with the results. We thoroughly enjoyed being there and appreciated the interest expressed by those editors who stopped by and visited our stand for a demo. A most sincere thanks must be extended from Tansa to the entire ACES board for making us feel so welcome at the conference and a personal thank-you to ACES President Teresa Schmedding for inviting us to this rather special event.
We look forward to seeing you next year in St. Louis.