Following this week's exercise in sub-editing, I discovered this clever tribute to the art from the Washington Post. It's by Pulitzer-winning writer Gene Weingarten, and praises the newspaper industry's copy editors (the US term for subs) by demonstrating the sort of nonsense we might have to read if they didn't exist. See how many of the 57 errors you can pick up.


I couldn't agree more. Time spent learning subbing, or actually doing it, radically improves your writing. Once upon a time I used to do casual subbing shifts at the Observer and The Times. And I never wanted to sub full time, but as well as improving my writing skills, I found it a rare pleasure to craft a witty headline or render readable someone's rubbish copy.

Why subs matter