Thursday, April 16, 2009

I'd NEVER have guessed.....

....he was half-a-century old!

Happy Birthday to you,
Happy Birthday to you,
Happy 50th Birthday dear Strunk & Whi-i-i-i-i-te,
Happy Birthday, to you!

Can you believe it? Today, 16 April, is the 50th birthday of Strunk & White. They've put out a very fancy Anniversary Edition in honor of the occasion. Now, the edition I have (and anyone reading this, and any writer in North America - at least - and frankly everyone else in the world SHOULD have an edition) is the Third Edition. My understanding is that the additions to the new one are nice enough, but the reviews seem to indicate that it's not enough change to go nuts to get the new one.

One thing that IS in the new edition (I heard this on NPR) is Dorothy Parker's quote regarding Elements of Style, as follows:

"If you have any young friends who aspire to become writers, the second greatest favor you can do them is to present them with copies of The Elements of Style. The first greatest, of course, is to shoot them now, while they're happy." -- Dorothy Parker, Esquire

If you don't have a copy, RUN, do not walk, to your nearest Half-Price Books or other used bookstore, college bookshop, anything, and buy it. (Or if you're That Sort, go get the fancy-schmancy one......even though I don't need it, of course, I might get one just because I'm a hopeless bibliophile-addict.)


Jen in CT said...

I passed my old copy of S&W onto my MIL who is aspiring to become a published novelist. She rather needed it--having never actually HEARD of S&W before that. I'll have to pick up a shiny!new! copy. :-)

Kitty Mommy said...

I just heard this on NPR while the kiddies were snoozing. I chuckled through the whole thing.

joyknits said...

I've had my 3rd Edition since 1979 - love it, gave one to my granddaughter :)

Jamwes said...

An awesome awesome book!