Monday, April 6, 2009

Tales From Self-Editing

My Dad was fond of saying, "There are erasers on pencils because we all make mistakes." Okay. I'm telling on myself today. My first drafts make a fifth grader's composition look like a Pulitzer Prize winner. Strangely enough, when I'm writing those thoughts cloaked in gossamer prose, they are beautiful.

Fast forward to the next day. I re-read my soon-to-be-published tome. Ack! How did "find" become "fine?" On the second read through, my eye picks up the phrase, "paint ships." Now if the piece concerned painting ships, this would be appropriate, but it's about selecting paint colors. Let's take out that "s" and replace it with a "c." Ah, that's better: paint chips. By the 6th print preview, despair grips me. Will I ever be ready to hit the "Publish" button???

Lesson learned: Read through the entire preview before releasing your words into the blogosphere. An editor may be lurking around the next corner.


Jessica Nelson said...

LOL I think about that too. I was looking over some earlier blog posts the other day, and lo and behold, TWO of them had glaring errors that I never saw and no one mentioned. Eek! Talk about weird and annoying. :-)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Jess -

No matter how careful I am, sometimes an error slips through. At least I'm not alone. I've picked up books by bestselling authors and found typos, spelling errors, etc.

Hopefully, we can all extend grace to one another.

Susan :)

Jody Hedlund said...

The same thing has happened to me too! I think there must be a blogging hacker who goes in and messes with our blogs after we've posted them! (At least I that would be better than me making all those mistakes!)

quietspirit said...

I entered a contest sponsored by the editor of a small literary magazine in my area. I thought I had been careful in the editing department. I thought the dead line was too close to take it to writing group. She published it 'as written.'

I found SIX errors in the published form. And there were some of the time break signs that got moved over to the left side of the page.
On my blog, I try to input the story a day or two ahead, then post. But then, I still have to edit before I post.

Kevin said...

Hi, Susan:
I think most people are able to overlook these kinds of boo-boos in a blog posting. I have a harder time overlooking a spelling error or grammatical error in a published book. But, it should just remind us that no one's perfect.
Well, ONE is. His Book has no mistakes!

Terri Tiffany said...

Oh dear,I spell so badly on blog posts to others-- and sometimes on my own posts! I type too fast I know! I will try harder cause it really annoys me. Thanks.

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Terri -

I'm usually trying to squeeze as many blogs into my computer time as possible. It's easy to miss a typo.

My mother also had a saying, "haste makes waste." LOL!

Susan :)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Jen -

I sure hope you're right because I make my share of goofs! Blogs are definitely more informal than a book. Misspellings and errors in books pull me right out of the story.

Susan :)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Quiet Spirit -

My first story in a print publication thrilled me down to my toes until...I found a mistake. An extra pair of eyes sure helps!

Susan :)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Jody,

LOL! I love it - "the blogging hacker." When all my friend's children would deny responsibility for some misdeed, she'd say, "I suppose it was Charlie." Now, I can say, "it was the blogging hacker."

Susan :)

Andrea K. Van Ye said...

What a great word picture for life ... sometimes we think we have said things one way, and low and behold, we are in error. Now only do we need to take captive every word .... but take captive every thought, and each word that flows from that thought. A great and gentle reminder. :)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Andrea -

Thanks for stopping by. :) I post here Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

Yes, communication is a tricky business. It's amazing how you can mean one thing, and someone gets a completely different message.

Hope you'll pop by often. :)