Here’s a comprehensive guide to English Grammar and Style:
This is a comprehensive glossary containing the explanations of about 250 English Grammar terms.
The above Wiki link gives an insight into the art of copyediting.
Here’s the link to one of the most revered authorities on English Grammar.
It’s the “Elements of Style” by Strunk and White.
Here’s a site for book lovers. It’s called www.shelfari.com
The site enables you to put up a “shelf” or display of your top 10 books, compare notes with other members about books, go through book reviews, and so on and so forth. However, upon using it, my personal experience is that it is not very user friendly.
Apart from some very obvious differences between US English and UK English, such as the spellings(US: color, traveled, dialog–UK: colour, travelled, dialogue) and the use of the serial comma( in American English), here are some more differences.
1) Singular and Plural nouns:In US English, you would say ” The Clash is a well-known band” wheareas in UK English, it is “The Clash are a well-known band”.
Similarly, in US English, one would say, Indianapolis is the champion, while in UK English, one would say Indianapolis are the champions.
2)Verbs: In US English, it is learned, dreamed etc. In UK English, it is learnt, dreamt.
US: Lighted ;UK: Lit
US: Proven ; UK: Proved
US: Dive-Dove; Sneak-Snuck ; UK: Not used.
3) US: I’ve just gotten home UK: I just got home
4) Shall is more commonly used in UK English.
5) US: meet with somebody UK: meet somebody
6)US: Monday through Friday; UK: Monday to Friday
7)Dates in US spoken English: July 11th. Dates in UK spoken English: The 11th of July
8) US: Colorado river UK: River Thames
9) US: the last letter of the alphabet is pronounced zee. In UK, it is pronounced zed.
10) US: sports section of the newspaper. UK: sport section
11) US: Mr. Sandburg UK: Mr Sandburg
www.m-w.com decribes a copyeditor as one who prepares copy for the typesetter or one who edits and headlines newspaper copy.
A proofreader is defined as someone who reads and marks corrections in typeset text.
So clearly, a copyeditor is the one who edits copy before the proofreader. After the copyeditor is done with his or her job, the next stage involves proofreading. This is at the typesetting stage and often the proofreader has to check every single word so that no “typos” are found.
Aside from this basic difference, here’s a list of tasks a copyeditor does: http://www.sfep.org.uk/pub/faqs/fedit.asp
This is a list of tasks a proofreader does: http://www.sfep.org.uk/pub/faqs/fproof.asp
These days there is software for almost every kind of need. So it is with proofreading as well. There is proofreading software available these days by the name of whitesmoke. They claim that it checks for spelling errors, grammatical errors, punctuation errors, and that there is a synonym dictionary and idiom dictionary in the package.
They have separate software for general writing, business writing, creative writing and legal writing.
Go to http://www.whitesmoke.com/ for more details.
A style sheet is a document the copyeditor prepares that lists the grammatical conventions and the distinctive treatment of words (capitalization, hyphenation, favored spellings, etc.) within a particular text.
Information such as ““Fragments are acceptable with this author’s style” and “Split infinitives are acceptable with this author’s style” and the rules for hyphenation are found on the style sheet.Does the author prefer to lowercase or capitalize a full sentence after a colon? Is the author following British English or American English etc. are some of the details one is likely to find in a style sheet.
Style guides are readily available in the market. The Chicago Manual of Style is a popular style guide for non fiction. It is considered the bible of all style guides.