Joe Diorio’s first book (and he’s 66 #NeverTooLate) wins Music City Gold Pen award for writing

A Few Words About Words: A common-sense look at writing and grammar by Joe Diorio, has won a Music City Gold Pen award for best writing from the Nashville chapter of the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC).

The award recognizes the book, published in August 2021 through Beaufort Books, as the best in the category of writing.

“Writing is a pure communication skill, so it is an honor to receive this recognition,” said Diorio, who wrote the book while living in Nashville. “The basis of any social media post, TikTok video, or any other communication is good writing.”

This is the third award the book has received. It has already been recognized as a notable title in the Shelf Unbound 2021 Indie Best Awards competition, and it is a bronze winner for humor in the from the 2021 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year competition.

It is Diorio’s debut book and takes a serious but humorous look at writing. Readers describe the book as “William Safire meets David Sedaris.” It is based on a monthly blog of the same name and talks about writing and grammar through the eyes of someone who had to teach himself the rules of grammar.

Excerpt: “I’m a master at writing around a grammatical problem. Do I need to say someone looked at the ceiling? Rather than tying myself up in knots over the ‘I before e’ rule to spell ceiling correctly, I’d just write, ‘He looked above.’ Is something effective or affective? ‘It really works,’ I’d write. Form the plural possessive of a noun? Don’t.”

The book has its share of practical advice, too like how not to start a social media post in which the writer wants to brag about an accomplishment:

“A quick scan of my news feeds on Twitter and LinkedIn shows the text in each post possesses the same banal monotony – ‘We are so proud,’ or ‘Today I had the chance to,’ or ‘This is super interesting,’ or ‘Humbled by (insert accomplishment).’ People, people, please stop! We can do better.”

A new resident of Fort Myers, Florida (he and his wife moved here from Nashville in May), Diorio has been a writer all his life. He wrote comic books as a kid (illustrated them, too), was a stringer for a local weekly newspaper in high school, worked for the college weekly newspaper, was a reporter for local daily papers in Connecticut, and he wrote speeches for executives with IBM and DuPont.

To help promote the book Diorio hosts a periodic Zoom-based “game show” where contestants answer a single question about grammar.

Available wherever fine books are sold, publisher Beaufort Books describes A Few Words About Words as the “go-to-grammar guide you pick up and can’t put down.”



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