Saturday, February 2, 2013

The Hunt for Mistakes in Dangerous Impulses





Oh, and what a hunt it has been! I've never ever gone through a book as much as I've gone through this one nor have as many other pairs of eyes looked at it.

The saga began when I was finished writing the book. Yes, you could call in the first draft. I do keep notes on what day and time things happen, the kind of cars, people drive, their names and what they look like. If can't remember I check my notes.

First people to see the book, chapter by chapter is my critique group. They are great, they find many repeated words, point out discrepancies, dialogue that sounds false, grammar errors, and where I've used the wrong name for someone. That's why I'm surprised so many mistakes popped up later.

Next I run the grammar and spell check--which catches a lot. Before I send a book off to the publisher, I go over it again, word by word.

Once the publisher gets it, she reads it and notes errors and sends it back. I fixed those errors, found some more and resubmitted.

She sent it back to me for the final check--I found some more things and sent them back.

The publisher printed 5 arcs which were sent out.

One of my friends spotted all kinds of errors and sent them to me. The use of the wrong name several times.

Stacey is one of the main characters, once the name was spelled Stacy. She recently married, her maiden name was Wilbur, she's now Milligan. I used Wilbur as her last name a couple of times.

Remember, that slipped past me several times, my writers' group, and my publisher.

There's a character named Vaughn Aragon--I called him Vince more than once. (Again, no one caught it up until my friend who had the ARC.)

I gave the first name of the murder victim to one of the suspects more than once. My friend found a couple of them--on my last check through, I found two more!

Oh, probably the funniest one is the kind of car that I called an Ultima rather than an Altima. I always ask my husband for kinds of cars because I don't know one from the other-I should have asked him how to spell it. Writing group didn't catch it, publisher didn't catch it, took my Eagle Eye friend. (And I should have taken the time to look it up. You can be sure I will after this.)

On my last run through I found a time problem--was easy to fix--but why didn't I or some of the other people who read through this see it before this?

Of course there were the usual typos and two words where there should have only been one, but even those shouldn't have been missed by all of us who were reading Dangerous Impulses.

What I'm hoping is that the story was so good that everyone got caught up in the story and that's why no one caught those errors.

My husband says my major problem is all the interruptions I have all day long. (Guess who interrupts me the most?)

In any case, with a big effort from many people, most of the problems are gone. I won't say all because I'm still convinced there are gremlins that jump on the page as soon as it is ready to go to the printers.

Marilyn aka FM Meredith





2 comments:

Lorna Collins - said...

I know the entire saga all too well! No matter how many times you go through it, those little devilish errors show up! I blame the Menihunis since we write a lot in and about Hawaii. That's my story, and I'm stickin' to it!

Monti said...

Good luck with your new book, Marilyn!!!