The suppliers of South Africa’s electricity are very happy with their loadshedding these days. The lights are going out whenever they fancy – sometimes up to three times a day, which is a large pain when you live online. Not to mention that winter’s pretty much here, and my feathered horde don’t take kindly to life without heat. Button’s taken to sitting next to me on my chair for leg warmth, with Jelly now a lap bird and the parrots feather boas. Anyway, moving unreasonably on to the totally unrelated topic of typos.
Not all typos are created equal. I know that some people are infuriated having a single one assault their sensibilities, but I think that some of them are so much more fun than the real word they’re impersonating. The problem is that sometimes after seeing a particularly cool one, they can put the brakes on anything else you’re trying to get done.
I was zooming through a fairly serious book for research purposes, when I was Earth-stoppingly (not a typo) struck by a little typo that now refuses to leave my mind, surfacing all the time and stopping me from doing anything constructive. A couple of typos in the books I read don’t generally bother me, and neither did the fact that this book had a typo in it. It’s the actual typo itself that won’t go away because of my weird and abnormal sense of humour. I know it’s weird and abnormal, because every time it strikes, and I’m laughing so hard that I cry, people always look at me in confusion when I try and share the funny – which is probably what you’re about to be doing right now. In this case it was –
Images of wontons being destroyed keep pushing my own sentences right out of my head. Destruction of wontons by flood, fire, and terrible cruelty. Even if I could eat gluten without fear of much pain and illness, I don’t think I could ever eat a wonton again. Crunching the poor little guys up – wanton wonton destruction. Perhaps there’s a whole world out there somewhere in the multiverse, where wontons exist peacefully, trotting about on their little legs and reciting beautiful wonton prose, but unbeknown to them, a fleet of spacecraft is preparing to enter their atmosphere carrying thousands of alien wanton wonton destroyers. Good! I think I’ve got it out of my system now by sharing it with you. Thank you.
I think that in a couple of years Indie books are going to be much less likely to have editing issues than traditionally published books, because of the need to prove ourselves up to the actual work of publishing. Gordon Ramsay with his name spelled wrong in the front matter of his memoir is alright for him, but as an Indie you would get properly pummelled for getting your own name wrong in your book. Even Stephen King had a problem in one of his short stories – Autopsy Room Four – which I absolutely LOVED until I got to the bit about an American golfer being bitten by a Peruvian Boomslang. My beloved Stephen actually mentions how much he enjoyed putting that imaginary snake in the story, because he loved the name Boomslang. Most people probably won’t see a research problem there unless you’re a South African King fan (and we are LEGION by the way), and know that Boomslang is an Afrikaans language word meaning tree snake, so any Peruvian snake is highly unlikely to be called by that particular moniker. You’d think that a top editor for one of the most legendary authors on the planet would have picked that up, but still not a big deal for him. The new breed of Indie would have researched a little more, I like to think, and not made that mistake.
So. After sharing all of these highly intellectual things with you, thereby proving that I really am a very, very serious author type person, back to work for me. Before the lights go out again.