Happy Tuesday, peeps, Doris here with what may well turn into a slightly ranty post. You have been warned….
As the title says I’m talking about the grammar police today. Whether you’re a new author or a seasoned one, you will encounter these oh so self-righteous individuals who seem to live for pointing out the slightest error an author makes.
Now, don’t get me wrong, when it comes to our books, of course, we should strive to make them as correct and fault free as we possibly can, but here’s the rub….
Brace yourself now, this might come as a shock to some of the aforementioned grammar police sorts.
Authors are human. Editors are human. Mistakes happen.
I know right? Unheard of! Never is that more in evidence than on social media. While we all strive to not let typos creep into our statuses, they do occasionally happen, especially when we’re in a hurry, and you know, this is the thing.
When I post a status, especially a non-promo related one I don’t think too much about how grammatically correct it is, nor whether the odd typo creeps in. If I notice them, and nine out of ten times I do the minute I’ve posted the darn thing, I’ll go back and edit it. Suppose, however, the author in question hasn’t noticed and the grammar police then come along and point out said typo LIKE THIS. Not only that, when the author makes a joke about it, said police then decide to inform the author that authors should be held to higher standards.
Okay then, just chill the heck out for one blessed minute here.
I should add here this hasn’t happened to me, but it still annoyed the crapola out of me, because, really, hand on heart now, you never, ever, post a status with a typo? What is served by being a dickwad about it, other than outing yourself as such of course?
Here on the Naughty Quills, we have pointed out numerous times that authors need editors, and they need to be aware of what they put out there on social media. With the best will in the world, mistakes happen, however, and berating an author over them… yeah, don’t do that.
Especially if this author normally has error free statuses. We all know the ones, who can’t seem to spell for toffee, and I roll my eyes as much as the next person. I will also be far less likely to give that author’s work a shot because no one needs a book riddled with errors.
The odd one that creeps in, however? Come on now, be gracious and smile. Some typos can be pretty hysterical too. And you, know, if you really feel that strongly about it, send that author a private message and let them know.
Easy, see, and far more polite.
So, how then do you, the author deal with these wonderfully righteous and always correct individuals… *insert a sarcastic smile*
Well, you could ignore them. My favorite method of dealing with them, especially if turning the whole thing into a joke doesn’t work. Harder to do when they send you a pm. I recall one reader who took it upon herself to point out every tiny error in my books, down to page number… I wouldn’t have minded too much, but a lot of the supposed errors were simply differences in US Grammar and spelling vs UK Grammar and spelling. What’s more, she wouldn’t accept this…
Well, the air was rather blue in private. I simply thanked her for her opinion and left it at that, cause, really, what else can you do?
Don’t get me wrong, if a book of mine is littered with errors, I want to know. Not least, because something may well have gone wrong in formatting, and my publisher needs to be aware of that, but the odd typo?
I recall one hysterical conversation I had with a reader when she pointed out to me that the dog in the story changed names half way through.
Yeah… *hangs head in shame*
To this day I have no idea how we all missed that in editing. Besides from mine, four other set of eyes looked over that story and we all missed it.
I refer you back to my earlier statement of being human.
These things shouldn’t happen, but they do. All, we as authors can do is try our utmost to present a finished product as error free as possible.
As for the grammar police out there…
Humor them, I gather they can’t help the big stick up their you know whats.
And if you’re one of those people, who just must point out these things, then for the love of all that is holy, do so with grace and good humor. Us authors are far more likely to listen and take note then. 🙂
That’s all from me today, you’ll be glad to hear.
Do stay naughty, folks!