Before I started work at SIPRI, I’d had a few editing jobs, but for the most part I’d been the only editor, or at least the only ‘native speaker’ (don’t get me started on how much I hate this term) in the office. The big difference now is that I’m part of a larger team of editors. The obvious benefit of this arrangement is that my work is checked by other (read: more experienced) editors; as a consequence, my work improves.
It’s also been interesting to rediscover my inner pedant, especially when it comes to fascinating questions of punctuation. I used to be a real ‘Hyphens, n-dashes and m-dashes? … meh’ kind of guy. No longer. I’ve even caught myself adding chevrons to URLs in non-work-related situations (and I also suspect my hyphen usage just then could have been better).
Image: a box o’ fresh copies o’ SIPRI Yearbook 2012.
Anyway, enough about me (oh, but one last thing: colons vs semi-colons? … ah, whatever). This post was supposed to be all about SIPRI Yearbook 2012 and its part in my downfall but since (like Elton John) Iiiiiiiii’m still standing, I guess I’ll just have to take another tack.
I can safely say that the Yearbook is the biggest and most sophisticated publication I’ve ever been involved in putting together, and that being one of its editors has offered me a brief glimpse into the amount of effort it takes to produce an annual compendium of the world’s military spending and other assorted hi-jinks.
I may sound like a spruiker but its absolutely chock-full of factoids, and most of it makes for pretty grim reading. Here’s one factlet FYI, and just to whet your appetite:
Makes you think, doesn’t it?