Mary Norris:
The nit-picking glory of The New Yorker's Comma Queen

TED2016 · 9:49 · Filmed Feb 2016
Watch next...
Erin McKean: Go ahead, make up new words!

Share this idea

Total views
TED Talks are free
thanks to support from

"Copy editing for The New Yorker is like playing shortstop for a Major League Baseball team — every little movement gets picked over by the critics," says Mary Norris, who has played the position for more than thirty years. In that time, she's gotten a reputation for sternness and for being a "comma maniac," but this is unfounded, she says. Above all, her work is aimed at one thing: making authors look good. Explore The New Yorker's distinctive style with the person who knows it best in this charming talk.

Copy editor
As a copy editor for the New Yorker, Mary Norris enforces some of the most authoritative (some might say eccentric) style rules in publishing. Full bio
This talk was presented at an official TED conference, and was featured by our editors on the home page.



Enthusiastically agree? Respectfully beg to differ? Have your say here.

2000 characters remaining
Don't have an account? Sign up now — it's fast and free.
Sort comments by
There are currently no comments for this talk.