23 Aug 2017: My guilty pleasure …..

It’s a guilty pleasure, one I know is somehow wrong.  I shouldn’t take perverse pleasure is seeing something incorrect, but I do.  Just to know that the big publishing houses are as fallible as I am … well, sometimes it’s what gets me through.

Now mind you, I cut indi authors some slack here. I’m never going to point these kind of errors out in a fellow indi’s book, but Nora Roberts?  Love ya, gal, but with all the professional eyes on your book? Seriously, maybe you should hire me or at least take me on as a beta reader.

Here is my latest discovery.  Two, count em’, two typos in Face the Fire, by Nora Roberts

Chapter 4, page 65

Her rude little gargoyle who stuck his tongue out of a grinning mouth at passerby.

– I’m pretty sure that’s supposed to be passerbys (with an s at the end.)

Chapter 18, Page 313

She studied the dining room, with its flowers and candles already in place. The window were open wide to summer.

– I believe they forgot the s at the end of windows making it plural.  Either that or were should have been a was.

So, what typos have you spotted in novels by big name authors? Let’s keep the dream alive for those of us who aren’t fortunate enough to have an army of editors behind us.


Jennifer Geoghan, author of:

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1 Feb 2015: Recognizing your Common Speliing Mistakes

It didn’t take long for me to recognize certain unwelcome patterns in my writing when I began to edit my books in earnest.  Some of my mistakes were because when I write, I type so fast when I’m trying to keep up with my mind that my fingers seem to take their own short cuts.  Other errors were that I’d unwittingly been spelling a word wrong all my life.  Take wheelbarrow.  Okay, I’ll admit something embarrassing.  I always thought it was spelled wheel barrel.   In my mind it made sense.  It was like a barrel, with wheels on it.  Duh … I will say in my defense that I don’t think I ever saw it written out growing up, but my father certainly used his wheelbarrow a lot, and where I come from, it’s pronounced barrel, not barrow.

Another foible of mine, is that I type so fast that I sometimes type all the write letters in a word, but not in the right order.  Becuase is a word I do this to a lot.  I’ll type the word out becuase, switching the a and u around.   I also type that as taht.  Or if I want to type “it was as if it never happened,” I’ll type “it wa sas ifi t never happened.”  Right letters, right order, just wrong spacing.  Honestly, it’s very annoying.

I think my favorite of my weird typos is how I commonly type and extra apostrophe in a contracted word.  Can’t will be can’t’ and didn’t will be didn’t’.    I still do this to this day and it’s super irritating.

But on the upside, I’ve recognized where I go wrong and this is one of the reasons, when my mother was reading my final draft of my latest book, she commented on how few typos I had.

I was thinking a lot about this yesterday when I was reading someone else’s manuscript.  He has his own little errors he’s commonly making.  His aren’t like mine though, which are mistakes of speed, his are mistakes of ignorance.  He just hasn’t studied how to write fiction.  His consistent errors are that he is commonly putting the period after quotation marks.  “I’m going to the store, honey”.  for example.  The period should be inside the end quotation mark, not after.  Sometimes he does it right, sometimes he does it wrong.

His other error is that he isn’t putting a comma at the end of a quote in a sentence.  Example:  “I’m going to the store” Frank said as he walked out the door.  There should be a comma after store.

At least for him, once he’s mastered these little things, he shouldn’t make his mistakes anymore.  With me, it’s a little different.  I have the slightest touch of dyslexia.  Forget numbers, I’m hopeless at numbers, but I have to fight to keep my common typos out of my writing.  But the first step is recognizing what you do on a consistent basis, once you do, you can really improve the quality of that first draft and make your editing process that much easier.


'Hello, Acme signs? This is the Berger & Coles Law Office...'

23 Jan 2015: Reasons why People Knock Independent Writers/Publishers

There’s a lot of discrimination and bad feelings about ebooks that are published by independent authors, saying that they are low quality and poorly formatted.  I take umbrage at that myself, seeing as I’m meticulous in my editing and formatting.   But every now and then I come across an ebook that just proves the critics right.  It’s depressing really.  I’m not sure if it’s just someone being lazy or simply not caring, but take a look at what I was reading this week.

In the photo of my kindle below, you can see that the title has two lines.  One line is centered across the width of the page, the other line is centered across the page with an indent, making them unevenly centered.  The “Chapter One” is also centered with the indent, not across the page, so the whole thing looks off kilter.   I’m not even going to get upset about the fact that traditionally fictional stories don’t have an indent on the first paragraph.  Had they stuck to this rule, they probably would have avoided this issue.


What’s wrong with picture number two?  Well, they have three hatchtags off to the left of the page.  I’m pretty sure they are meant to be a divider between chapters, but I’m not going to bet my life on that one.  Again, “Chapter Two” is centered with a margin instead of across the page.  Plus, why not just have a page break?  Had she inserted a page break between chapters, it wouldn’t look so odd and we could have left off the strange hatchtags.   By the way, all the new chapters look this way.


Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the story in this book, but I also found a few typos.  Here’s a sampling:

“Not that it was any surprised to Beau.”  (Sorry should be surprise, not surprised)

“Did you hear you hear what I said?”  (Words repeated)

“She dragged herself from underneath the sheets and quickly showered and dressed in a pair of jeans and light cotton shirt.”  (I’m pretty sure that should be “and a light cotton shirt”

“She gone through the motions of packing her clothes …” (She gone? I’m kinda thinking it should be She went)

Like I said, despite all this, I really liked this story.  It’s just unfortunate that the bad formatting and numerous typos and oddities that should have been caught in the editing process weren’t fixed.  They detract from a really well crafted story line and well developed characters.

I’m not saying I’m perfect by any means!  I certainly have had a typo or two in my books.   I’m grateful when someone points them out to me.  When I get them, I enter them in my master copy and update the book on Amazon.  However, my books are generally about 200,000 words long, about three or four times longer than your typical romance ebook.  If your book is only about 30-60,000 words, I have a lot less patience for the kind of mistakes I found in the book I’ve mentioned above.

So have ever come across any frustrating typos and formatting errors in ebooks you’ve read?