We are getting closer to the release of my new book, Big Lake Hoarder. Roberta Jensen finished proofing the last chapters on Saturday and sent them to me, and yesterday morning I made her corrections then printed the entire manuscript out for Terry to go over again. Once she does that and I make her corrections, it will go back to Roberta again for the final read through.
Some people think this is overkill, and an author friend of mine told me he doesn’t understand why I waste so much time with this step of the process. He said he finishes a manuscript, proofs it himself, and releases it and moves on to the next one. My response to him was you do you and I’ll do me. I take pride in not only releasing a book with a good storyline and researching facts for that story, but also in turning out the best possible book I can, eliminating every error we can find. And a career in the newspaper business taught me that you can’t proof your own work. It’s kind of like the old saying that a man who is his own lawyer has a fool for a client.
And yet, even with all of the steps we take, errors can still slip through. In going through those final chapters that Roberta sent me, I found where I had a character’s name misspelled from the way it was in the rest of the story. How does that possibly happen? I don’t know, but me, Terry, Judy, and Roberta all missed it the first time around. And even when a book does come out, I sometimes have readers contact me to point out something else that got missed. It’s not the proofreaders’ fault, because I have some of the best around helping me. I honestly believe that little gremlins do it in the middle of the night while we are sleeping.
And please folks, if you ever do find a typo in one of my books, let me know so I can correct it. A while back someone said he didn’t want to offend me by doing so. I told him that wouldn’t offend me at all, but it would really embarrass me to have a book floating around out there with a mistake that should have been corrected before it ever hit the public.
Besides book stuff and eating lots of leftover turkey, Terry and I have watched a couple of good movies on Netflix recently. One was Loving, which is based on the true story of Richard and Mildred Loving, a white man and an African-American woman whose marriage was illegal in 1958, according to Virginia state law, causing them to be arrested and banned from the state. It took years before the Supreme Court ruled the Virginia law violated the Constitution. We like to think that things like that happened a long time ago, but all of this took place when I was a kid growing up. Of course, that was a long time ago, too.
The other good movie we saw was Hillbilly Elegy. It has received some bad reviews, and I have seen people on Facebook saying that it’s offensive and totally unrealistic. I think a lot of the reviews and comments are from people who see it as a slap in the face to them because they come from that region. I went to high school in Toledo, 175 miles north of where the movie is set in Middletown, Ohio, and I knew many people just like the characters in the movie. My high school girlfriend’s mom was a carbon copy of the mother in the story, except that her drug of choice was alcohol. More than once, my girlfriend’s brother and I, or me and her, would have to go get the mom from the corner bar and drag her home. The kids were eventually taken in by an aunt, who provided them a stable home. The world isn’t always pretty, but that doesn’t mean those stories shouldn’t be told.
Congratulations Alun Bell, winner of our drawing for an audiobook of The Three Pirates – Famous Murderous Pirate Books Series: The Islet of the Virgin. This is book 4 in my friend Ken Rossignol’s pirate book series. We had 18 entries this time around. Stay tuned, a new contest starts soon.
Thought For The Day – Women who seek to be equal to men lack ambition. – Marilyn Monroe