Editing and Finding Consistency Errors

Received the first galley proof for No Bells.

Oh, my goodness. Something I learned immediately is I do have a problem keeping track of characters' vehicles. This is not a new problem. I believe it relates to a flaw I have when it comes to cars in real life. The kind of car people drive has never been important to me. If I go somewhere with someone, I need to stick with that person because if they park in a filled parking lot I won't be able to remember what their car looked like. I am most observant when it comes to everything else, just not cars.

In my first Deputy Tempe Crabtree mystery, Tempe's official vehicle is a Blazer sometimes and at others a Bronco.

When I was writing No Bells I carefully wrote down what kind of vehicle each person drove after I mentioned it. (I usually ask my husband for kinds of cars, for instance, "What would be a good kind of sports car for a rich young kid to drive?" "What would be a classy older car for someone to drive?")

Once I got the names of the cars I wrote them down along with other things about each character. Obviously I didn't check enough--probably when I got engrossed in the story. This time I got the type of car right but not the color. Sometimes a BMW was black and once it was gray. A Toyota mini van changed from dark to light green. (My eagle-eyed publisher caught all of these.)

I did find other inconsistencies with days and times people worked. Grrrrr! I have a phobia about this and always do a timeline and yet I messed up in a couple of place.

Frankly, I'd like to go back to blaming gremlins, though to be honest it's all stuff I missed despite going over the manuscript carefully before sending it on to my publisher.

That's my big writing confession for the day. I hope I caught everything this time.

Marilyn

Comments

Patricia Gligor said…
Marilyn,
Thank God for publishers who catch errors! I do a lot of reading and, in almost every novel I've read (including the BIG NAMES who have secretaries, publicists, proofreaders, editors and countless other people reading their books), I've found at least one mistake.
I'm a stickler for accuracy too and I dread the day that someone points out an error, or errors, in my novel once it's published. I'm already doing some self talk, reminding myself that only God is perfect and, after reading my manuscript FIFTY MILLION times, my eyes tend to skip over any errors or omissions.
Hi, Patricia, it is so hard to see these problems sometimes. I have to print out the copy and go over it carefully--even then mistakes pop up later.

Marilyn

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