Kings of Infinite Space, my first novel, was written between 1998 and 2000. This is an epic fantasy of over 184,000 words. I mention this only to excuse the presence of numerous errors – mostly spelling errors, and duplicate or missing words – in my single hard copy of the novel. Over the years, the number of post-it notes sticking out between pages grew into quite a forest. Well, okay, maybe thirty or so.
Creating the EPUB version last year was quite an effort because I had lost the latex source files and was forced to recreate the text from the PDF version, using Calibre for the heavy lifting. Still, it was a worthwhile endeavour, and I was able at last to throw the post-it notes into the bin.
Relaxing after all that to read it (Kindle on the iPhone) I found a whole bunch of new errors.
I like to think that I am a careful editor, but it’s amazing how blind we can be. I am currently reading my second novel, having published it a month ago and not really looked at it since. This is a shorter work, only 82,000 words and written over a period six months.
About 30% of the way into Suzie and the Monsters is this wonderful phrase:
… was assaulted and killed in his home shortly after 4 pm this morning.
Oh dear! How embarrassing…
How many times did I read that before publishing? Certainly many. I remember thinking very carefully about whether it should be pm or p.m., eventually deciding to follow the style of the newspaper article that had provided that glaringly incorrect pm.