I just have to write this blog today. I want to warn those of you who think your work is spotless, no errors, no spelling mistakes, perfection – that you could be fooling yourself. Take me for instance – I was positive that the books I’ve released were in the best shape I could get them.
Know what? It isn’t so. I decided to reread one of my series and you’ll never guess what I found?
You got it!
Crazy mistakes that are so easy to bypass that quite a few of us actually did. Name changes so slight – maybe one letter – easy to miss but unacceptable. Missing words that most eyes would pass over. But not everyone’s. Spelling mistakes that might be the difference between US grammar to Canadian but should at least be uniform. I thought I knew most of them – seems I don’t. And other grammar don’tsthat I did!!
If you’re like me and rely on your editors, that might not be such a good idea. After all, they can be having a bad day or maybe when you make the changes they suggest, another blunder comes up and no-one notices. To top it off, I have a fantastic proof-reader and she sent me corrections. Yeah – but they got to me during a particularly busy time and I thought – can’t be that bad. Then I let the chance go by and never got back into making her suggested changes. How dumb is that??
I understand that these problems don’t make the story any less interesting or exciting but they do annoy, and can be the difference between getting a 3 star review versus a 5 star one.
I mean, I know myself when I’m deep into the plot and totally enjoying the rhythm and a blaring spelling error trips me up. It kinda slows my pace, stops me for a few seconds while I register it. I guess if it happens to me, it will to others.
I know many folks don’t really care, some don’t even notice and others just shrug and keep reading. But there are those who, like me, are authors – or teachers – or laymen editors and they deserve the best book that it’s possible for us to publish.
I will do my best to make certain all my work is clean from now on and will also go back and double-check some of the older work just to be sure. Starting with the Vegas books!! The reviewers tried to warn me – I thought, mistakenly, I had it covered. Something niggled at me, the last review I saw got to me and I began reading them again last night. OMG!!
So… we can’t be too careful. After all, these are our babies we’re dressing up and releasing to the world. They deserve the best chance we can give them in order to succeed.
Do any of you sometimes wonder – what the hell have I gotten myself into, thinking I’m a real author???
Leandra Hanes says
Christina Carson says
I have certainly had the thought, am I even literate. Errors of any sort make me cringe at best. I would give most anything to find a truly competent proofreader. I haven't come close yet. I always enjoy how seriously you take your job as author, Mimi. It's always there, and I congratulate you for it.
Mimi Barbour says
Hi Christine, Thank you for your kind words. I am working on trying to stop myself from reading my work like a speed-reader. Some people have the ability to read every single word…. gosh I wish I could. Guess I just need to find that perfect editor combination. And then make the corrections my proof-reader sends me no matter how busy I am. Live and learn my mom used to say – she was certainly right LOL
Mary J. Forbes says
I think we all go through this kind of cringing process, Mimi. It's a rare book that's absolutely "spotless", imho. That said, if there was a magic wand we could wave over our work to fill in those missing words and fix errors, I'd be first in line, LOL!
Mimi Barbour says
Hi Mary, If you EVER find that wand, I want one too 🙂
Guess the closest we can get is a damn good editor. Happy New Year!!