Sunday, June 29, 2008

Typos are not okkay.

I get annoyed by typos. Not that I never make them, because I do.

But, I spend a lot of time at my job everyday proofing stuff. I catch typos all day, everyday. And, I'm pretty good at it. I don't catch them all, but I can comfortably say that I catch more typos than most people on any given day.

However, now that I have time and desire to read again, I am confused. I don't understand how books, REAL books, make it into my hands with typos in them.

Seriously. If I buy a book and I'm reading it and I'm catching typos in the book, what's up with that?

The book is written, usually by someone who is a professional writer, which by default should mean they know how to spell pretty well. Even if they can't, unless they are using a typewriter or charcoal on a shovel, it's probable that they have spell check of some sort to catch typos.

THEN, even if the initial draft (understandably) is finished with typos, there are proofreaders and editors that take a crack at it. They have dictionaries and style guides and beyond that, hopefully some sort of degree or professional experience that they can fall back on to catch all of the typos, grammatical errors, and other whatnot that should be fixed before a book is considered final and ready to print.

So, by my calculations, that's at least three people (or robots, if that might be the case) who have read the entire book with the intent to make it absolutely perfect.

SO, how does a book get through all of those people, plus mass production, and into my hands with a typo in it?

The book I finished today had more than one typo in it, including a figure illustration that was on the opposite page of the text that explained it. How does that happen?

I don't catch all the typos in the entire world. I'm only human, and sometimes mistakes make it through my eagle eye.

But if I can catch typos in a published book, I think I should get my money back for the mental anguish it causes me to deal with the typos in the book I paid for.


P.S. If there are any typos in this post, please let my editor know.

1 comment:

Kate said...

I get completely distracted by typos in books. Ticks me off to no end.