Proofread!

(Literary Cat, by SuziJane)

Whether it was here on 777 Peppermint Place or over on AuthorCulture, I don’t remember, but I posted a whole series of pictures of things printed before they were proofread. From large signs to restaurant menus, everything needs to be proofread.

I know that.

Why didn’t I do it?

Let’s start with the invitations for my debut party this weekend. I found the perfect stock paper for the invitation: a lariat circling a cowboy hat and swirling along the edges of the page. Loved it! Bought out the entire stock (which turned out to be less than fifty, so I had no room for error), brought them home, and designed the invitation. I tested it to see if I had the paper in the printer right and again to see whether the invitation would land centered on the page the way I wanted. Made adjustments, tested again.

When I was certain it landed on the page just the way I wanted it to, I printed out all forty-six pages. Every last one of them. Then I showed them to MSB, who took one look and asked, “Who’s phone number is that?”

It was supposed to be ours. I had transposed the last two digits.

Always proofread before you print! I know that!

But not long ago, I sent the invitation to the church secretary. I wanted a flyer page for the church bulletin, but only managed to gain a paragraph in the bulletin itself. The following Sunday, I looked, and there it was. My announcement to my church family that my book was coming out and they were all invited to join me at the Hardeman House B&B to celebrate.

That Sunday and the following one and the one after, people were asking me “Where’s Hardeman House?”

The question always floored me. I’ve only been there a couple of times, so I didn’t feel safe giving them directions. Besides, the address is in the bulletin, and they could “Google” it, right?

Guess what? The address wasn’t in the bulletin. I didn’t notice, because I had sent the address on the flyer and assumed it was in the bulletin.

Proofread! Engage your full brain! I know that!!!

But I added the distribution info to the flyer and sent it off to the printers to have several color copies made. The first set they’d printed for me was a tad too red. In my picture, I looked as sunburned as if I’d spent the day on a sandy beach. I wanted to be sure the color was right this time. And it was. I paid a ridiculous amount of money for the color copies and took them home.

I started folding the flyers to include in my mail-out of special friends’ and reviewers’ books. I hand-wrote a little note to everyone to take the flyer to their bookstore and order it so maybe my cover will adorn some shelves across America. Port Yonder Press isn’t a household name among writers yet, it’s still too new–so the SkySail imprint is really obscure. A friend told me he ordered the book at his bookstore, and the clerk, not recognizing the publisher, thought it was self-published, until he found it listed with Ingram. So the distribution information is really important.

But, guess what? That “really important” information had been cut off by the copy machine. Wasn’t there. Nowhere to be found.

I would’ve known that if I’d been more attuned to the entire page and not just my red face.

Well, my face is definitely red now.

Proofread!

About Linda W. Yezak

Author/Freelance Editor/Speaker (writing and editing topics).
This entry was posted in Personal, Promotion/Publicity/Marketing, Writing Tips and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Proofread!

  1. Liberty says:

    Aw, Linda! It happens to the best of us! Just know that after this experience, I bet you get better at proofreading. 🙂

    Like

  2. Keiki Hendrix says:

    That is an incredible story. Hope it all gets Romans 8:18’d before too long. Blessings to you my friend.

    Like

    • Linda Yezak says:

      Terrific verse reminder, Keiki. I think the secular equivalent in this case would be “don’t sweat the small stuff”!

      Like

  3. V.V. Denman says:

    I’m a little nauseated now. Empathy pains. Hang in there, Linda!

    Like

  4. K.M. Weiland says:

    Argh. Ain’t that how it goes? A very large part of me wants to completely avoid reading anything I’ve written once it’s irrevocably in print. Ignorance is bliss and all that…

    Like

  5. Lynne Walding says:

    As my husband would say “Doggone the Luckin'” Don’t know the exact interpretation of the profound statement – but it’s definitely an expression of sympathy. Does it help to know that we’ve all been there? Maybe not so often. (just kidding) I can’t list all my boo-boos. They are too numerous. I’d say “what difference will it make in 100 years”, except I hate that statement! Hey girl, just keep saying “I’m published!

    Like

  6. Lynne Walding says:

    Lookie there – I forgot the (“) at the end of my comment! As a friend of mine once said . . . “Proofread!”

    Like

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