The Bazaar Talent of Editing
Bonus points if you figured out the title is screwed up. I used it on purpose, courtesy of MS Word’s auto-correct ‘bazaar’ was used instead of ‘bizarre’ in my book, Wanted. There are other errors as well, typos that slip past the eye of someone attempting to scrutinize if for detail. The irony is that incorrect words and spellings leap off the page and slap a casual reader across the face.
I’ve had reviews on Wanted in particular stating it was good but it needed some typographical assistance. This is frustrating to me – I need details and some means of understanding the scope of the problem. I had a wonderful woman sent me an email today that went into some of those details. Now, finally, I can have a better grasp of the problem and put a plan in motion to correct it.
It’s embarrassing to me, as a writer, to put out products like that. In the early days when I went through a different publishing company such errors were rampant. Horrible editing took place, and in some places no editing at all. Since I’ve reigned myself in and now control my own books from start to finish it’s gotten better, but I’m certain some mistakes still slip through. Say what you will about traditional publishing, at least 95% or more of the time they do a bang up job on editing.
As for me, I’ve found a couple of great editors in my life. Even they have differing skill sets though. One is great at helping to smooth out how the story flows. Another has an amazing bullshit-meter. A third can kill the difference in passive versus active voice with the skill of a sniper. I’m in the process of finding an outstanding copy editor and I believe I have a couple of them lined up. Thank you, Twitter!
So, fellow writers, make sure you get your books edited properly! Trust me, you can’t edit your own book. Oh sure, you can try and you might even catch a lot of stuff, but you’re going to miss a lot too. It needs to be somebody else doing it, somebody who knows what they’re doing, not your uncle, sister, wife, or friend. Unless, of course, your uncle, sister, wife, or friend has experience and training at editing.
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