Oxford commas run in fear from assistant copy/web editor

Published by adviser, Author: Amanda Salvia - Asst. Copy/Web Editor, Date: May 4, 2017

I made the conscious choice not to go into journalism because I hated journalistic style. I specifically changed my major from journalism to creative writing.

Yet here I am, nixing the Oxford comma from every sentence to fit AP style. I’m doing it willingly. And if I’m doing my job right, you don’t even know I’m here.

Most of my work at The Rocket has been behind the scenes; if you’ve read a story in the last year and a half (or if you’ve seen a semicolon in one), it passed through me first, and I’ve checked and double-checked spelling, grammar and every single sports term to make sure it’s accurate.

I know so many sports terms now.

The Rocket has been a place to develop as an editor, as a writer and as an active member of campus. I mean, during the strike, The Rocket had me literally sprinting around campus, live streaming marches and picket lines.
(If my wheezing distracted you from the stream, I apologize. Cardio isn’t my strong suit.)

It takes all types of people to make The Rocket. I’m glad they found a need for this reluctant copy editor.

A couple thanks: first, to the staff, who made this English major feel welcome in the communication department, and who became my friends. Thanks for all the personality quizzes. I stand by my every ruling.

Next, to Kopy Korner: Thursdays were a joy when I knew I’d get to sandwich myself between these kickass women. Thank you for sharing laughter and dog pictures, for webbing (most of) the photos and for staying in on a Friday to watch Twilight in the office with me. (Also, you’re welcome for that.)

Finally, to Victoria Davis, the person who told me what I needed to hear: that I would be a great editor and that I was being stupid for clinging to my distaste for journalism. She was right. I couldn’t have had a better editor or a better friend. Together, we grew The Rocket’s social media presence exponentially, got a tweet featured in The New York Times and listened to Kate Bush’s “Wuthering Heights” hundreds more times than I ever wanted to. She’s the best person to have on your team, and I’m so lucky she was on mine.

I look forward to dusting off my Oxford commas again. But I will miss everything else, and I hope that even this quiet voice served the paper well.


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