Bear Fur On A Bare Fir

English is such a wonderful language. And such a hodge-podge of words. It’s made up of some Latin, a large dose of Anglo Saxon, bits of Norse, smatterings of Hindi etc.

So, no wonder we have all kinds of strange spellings. Which is why writers must be extremely careful not to make stupid mistakes.

There are sum really basic errors – like using there, or their when we mean they’re. It’s easy two do. Our fingers are flying across the keybored but can’t quite keep up with the story that’s pouring out. Then we read it back and  see what we expect to sea.

I’m sure most of us proofread. At least a couple of times. Many also click on Word’s spelling and grammar check. Trouble is, that won’t pick up on mistakes like the ones above.

I was prompted to write this post by a couple of books I read recently (the guilty to remain nameless). One talked about that famous Mediterranean island of Cypress, the other mentioned children in an orchestra crashing their symbols together.

Both of these made me smile but they also interrupted the flow of the story and made me think ‘doh’!

Being an author myself, I realise I’m on dodgy ground here. People in glass houses and all that. But my message is: do proofread – at least five times. And even if you can’t afford a professional proofreader, do get someone else (with a reasonable level of literacy) to check your work.

Because if we don’t then our published work risks looking shoddy and unprofessional – not to mention semi-literate. The result then is bad reviews and fewer buyers individually. Even worse, we’ll drive readers away from the world of indie publishing.

So, take care – and if you do spot any errors in my books, please let me know. At least it means you’ll have read the novel!


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