Strike That! (In)Famous Literary Typos and How to Avoid Making the List

There is no question: Editing is important not just for small-scale boo-boos like grammatical gaffs and questionable spelling but also for large-scale issues such as continuity irregularities and factual errors. Even little goofs can add up to a seriously bad impression, poor reader enjoyment and snarky reviews that can hurt sales.

No matter how sharp-eyed an author fancies himself/herself, flubs happen. After many hours, weeks, months (even years) of writing — not to mention the multiple rounds of revisions that inevitably follow — our brains play tricks on us. We know what we meant to type, so our minds perform a mental “autocorrect” … and the error stands unnoticed. Sometimes that same typo gets by our Aunt Sally or Grandpa Jones, who fastidiously read every word and fixed lots of errors.

But as these famous and lauded literary giants prove, even the greats have not-so-great moments. You won’t believe what typos made it into some of your favorite works:

  • The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Yes, Mark Twain let this goof get by him when referring to a saw: “I took the bag to where it used to stand, and ripped a hole in the bottom of it with the was.”
  • An American Tragedy. Theodore Dreiser didn’t have spell check to fall back on when he wrote this classic. The “tragedy” in this case is a small but amusing typo in this sentence: “… harmoniously abandoning themselves to the rhythm of the music — like two small chips being tossed about on a rough but friendly sea.”
  • Twilight. With a writing timeline of just a few months and a rushed production schedule, the first edition of Stephenie Meyer’s fantasy bestseller went to press brimming with errors. Most consist of mixing up “though” with “through” and “whose” with “who’s.” Thankfully, young readers were either very forgiving or oblivious.
  • Webster’s New International Dictionary. Bet you didn’t expect such a fastidious publication to make the list, huh? In Webster’s first edition (1934), abbreviations and words were intermingled; for example, the abbreviation “lb” (for “pound”) could be found right after the word “lazy.” This system changed with the second edition, with abbreviations being gathered into a separate section at the back of the dictionary. A card was prepared bearing the notation “D or d, cont/ density” to indicate D and d as abbreviations for the word “density” and was supposed to go into the “abbreviations” pile. Somehow, the card ended up in the “words” pile and an editor removed the spaces. So, the “D or d” notation ended up being set as the single word “dord.” The non-word remained in the dictionary for five years until it was finally caught and removed.

As you can see, thorough editing is not optional — not for anyone. With all the competition in today’s literary market, readers have the luxury of being unforgiving about unattractive cover designs, jumbled formatting, typos and other errors that lower their perception of a book’s value. Don’t give them even a single reason to skip over you.

Since we can’t objectively edit our own work, it costs more than time to get the job done. For most authors, the wisest decision is to hire a professional editor who can view the manuscript with fresh eyes, objectivity and an encyclopedic knowledge of spelling, grammar and syntax.

The good news is that an experienced book editor doesn’t have to break the bank. Because the market for copy editing has diversified in recent years and the level of service can be tailored to an author’s needs, the costs are much lower than they used to be. Take your time, get referrals and find an editor whose expertise and personality work best for you and your project.

Do you have questions about professional copy editing? Contact an Outskirts Press Publishing Consultant to find out how this option works or to make a low down payment. There are three convenient ways to connect:

 

One Outskirts Press Author Will Win a New Laptop Computer in our “Show Us Your Love” Contest

We are always excited to hear from our authors always but we are extra-excited to invite you to join us in sharing your publishing journey during our Annual “Show Us Your Love” social media event. All you have to do to be eligible to win is count the ways you love Outskirts Press and your publication.

The annual event takes place around Valentine’s Day, and this time we’re spreading the self-publishing love to you with a fabulous grand prize: a brand-new laptop computer. Please note, previous Show Us Your Love contest winners are not eligible to enter the contest within three years with the same book. The deadline to enter is Friday, February 15th.

Showing your love is easy. Here’s how the contest works:

  • Record a brief video between 1 and 3 minutes long that demonstrates your deep and abiding love for your book and your publishing experience with Outskirts Press. The more creative, the better.
  • Or alternatively, take a fantastic photo commemorating your love for your Outskirts Press publication. Creativity counts!
  • Email your video file in an .mp4 or .mov format or your image in a .jpg or .png format to love@outskirtspress.com. The contest is open through February 15th.
  • Outskirts Press will share your video or image(s) on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and, if applicable, Instagram, increasing exposure for you and your book. (Please Note: By submitting a video or photograph(s) for this contest, authors grant Outskirts Press permission to post said videos or photograph(s) to its social media platforms for promotional purposes.)
  • The three finalists who receive the most “likes” on Facebook for their entries will be selected for a public vote on the Outskirts Press blog from February 18th — February 23rd to determine the winner. Be sure you follow us on Facebook, Twitter and elsewhere so you can “like” your favorite videos or images and visit our blog to vote!
  • The winner of the laptop computer will be announced via the blog on Wednesday, February 28th.

Last year’s bumper crop of submissions displayed a true labor of love. When the dust settled, our friends and followers identified Jackie Fischer, author of The Lost Branch, who showed us all what love looks like and won a new Laptop in the process. You can see Jackie’s winning video here. Runners up were Patti Reim, author of I like Big Buts and John E. Peltier, author of The Thundering Herd.

We can’t wait to hear the stories you have for us this year, so submit your submissions as early as you can! The sooner your submissions go live on our social media accounts, the more exposure you’ll receive and the more “likes” you can collect. Share the link to your submission once we post it to our Facebook and/or Instagram page with all your friends, family members, fans and social media followers! (And of course, don’t forget to “like” your own submission.) Contests such as this one serve as valuable — and free!—promotion for your books, so we hope you have a chance to sit down and whip up a great video in the days to come!

And that’s all the information you need to get started. We’ll be standing by to receive and share your submissions, as well as to answer any questions you might have. Swing on by our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/OutskirtsPress or our YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/OutskirtsPress to get a glimpse of some spectacular self-publishing love!

 

 

Product Description – HP 15.6″ Touch Screen Laptop
Size: Intel CPU+8GB RAM
Notable in every way. From its souped-up performance to its spacious display, the affordable HP Notebook 15 is set to be your go-to laptop. It combines a 7th Gen Intel Core i3 processor with 8GB of memory and a huge 1TB hard drive for excellent multitasking and multimedia capabilities. The Notebook 15 delivers great portability, too, with a weight that’s just 4.6 pounds and slim profile under an inch thin. With 8GB of memory, the Notebook 15 handles multitasking with ease while a 1TB hard drive has the space you need for storing volumes of files. A roomy 15.6-inch HD touchscreen provides a large canvas for work and play, and is excellent for kicking back with a movie. The 7th Gen Intel Core i3 delivers the most responsive performance to date with features like built-in security and 4K resolution support. DTS Studio Sound delivers deep, rich bass and crystal-clear highs, creating a pitch-perfect listening experience for music, videos, and games. A total of three USB ports (1 USB 3.0, 2 USB 2.0) are perfect for connecting and charging peripherals, while HDMI delivers big-screen sharing and entertainment.

Make Valentine’s Day Dreamy: Receive $300 to Spend Toward Your Self-Publishing Passion

Valentine’s Day is all about passion: finding it, feeding it, indulging it. It’s a time when writers are creating and readers are chasing flights of fancy. What passions will you be indulging during this time of love?

When you’re not reading—and you’re done (or mostly done) writing—Valentine’s Day is a prime time to honor your love for the written word. It’s a time of year when the frenzy of the winter holidays are behind us and summer activities seem so far ahead. It’s perfect for publishing that book in which you poured all your creative energies the year before.

Outskirts Press shares your love for literature—and now, we’d like to help you indulge it during the new Dreamin’ for Dollars Publishing Promotion (a $300 value!). We’re giving authors just like you $300 in spending credit with the purchase our Ultimate or Full-Color publishing package! You can use that chunk of spending credit money toward additional options or upgrades to your package.

Outskirts Press has a number of valuable publishing, book customization options and book marketing services that demonstrate just how far $300 can go, including:

  1. Professional Copy Editing. Ensure a polished manuscript that impresses even the most discerning bookworms.
  2. Custom Cover Design. Reel in readers and increase your odds of selling.
  3. Ebook Publishing. Broaden your selling potential to millions of readers.
  4. Book Video Trailer. Capture imaginations in the virtual realm with an entertaining book trailer.

To claim your $300 credit, simply enter the promo code Receive300 at checkout when you purchase the Ultimate or Full-Color publishing package from Outskirts Press. You will receive a confirmation email when the credit has been added to your account. This is a limited-time offer, so don’t delay!

Not sure which publishing package is right for you? Call a Publishing Consultant at 1-888-672-6657 (OP BOOKS), or chat with us using the live chat option on our website www.outskirtspress.com.

 

A Testimonial by Author Doc Morris

Author E.J. Morris, also known to many as Doc Morris, knew what he wanted from the self-publishing experience … and he wanted outstanding customer service, a straightforward and easy-to-navigate publishing process, and a high-quality finished product. We at Outskirts Press had the privilege of publishing his book, The Modern Day Mr. Mom, in May of 2018. The book, which takes inspiration for its title and theme from John Hughes’ screenplay for the 1983 classic film Mr. Mom, chronicles the sum total of Morris’ experiences as well as the lived experiences of stay-at-home fathers everywhere. While there is no “how-to” template for successfully managing life as a parent and homemaker, The Modern Day Mr. Mom sets out to provide a toolkit for those who maybe need just a little bit of extra encouragement in navigating our busy world and its multitudes of demands.

Morris, who was inspired to write this book by the words and wisdom of his own late father, continued to provide support and encouragement even after the book’s publication in a letter he wrote to thank his Outskirts Press Author Representative, Jamie Rath, and his Publishing Consultant, Kirsten Ringer, for their work on his behalf in ensuring he had the best possible self-publishing experience. With his permission, we are providing the full text of his letter here for you to read, as we believe it represents the best of what Outskirts Press has to offer: an unmatched, personalized, deeply human publishing service.


My Author Representative and Publishing Consultant had gone the extra uphill mile(s) to ensure that my what ifs and oh by the ways were always answered in a timely manner to meet the timelines for my revised review(s) process with a mountain of patience. Needless to say, I never felt as if I were wearing out my welcome. My manuscript from the digital author galley days to the end was “smooth” as a handoff from quarterback Vince Ferragamo to Hall of Famer running back Eric Dickerson. The end product as well, from the official release on Amazon and Barnes & Noble, was also seamlessly coordinated like a baton handoff in the changeover box in the track-and-field one-mile relay world, thanks to Jamie’s attention to detail.

Jamie and Kirsten, on the aforementioned dates, spearheaded what started out as a joke with my bedridden father one day when he asked, while I was taking care of him, “So what do you have going on today?” After a few minutes of running down my laundry list of tasks, appointments, and what I was planning on cooking for my four boys and wife for dinner, he gave me the time-out signal and wrote on his whiteboard: “Information overload, quit.” Although he passed away on Veterans Day in 2015, I kept to my end of the bargain and wrote a book about overcoming a mountain of challenges and tasks once I retired from the U.S. Navy, in a more modern arena as I took the role of Mr. Mom. Five days before he passed away, my father mouthed the words: “Finish that book ….” This was the least I could do after my wife had towed the line raising our four boys alone while I was forward deployed multiple times, eleven years in total away throughout my twenty-year career in the military.

Jamie even quarterbacked some questions that arose while my wife was in the hospital on one occasion. I will never forget that! This ideology of her enthusiasm is what motivated me to press on during the process, even when time was thin. Patience is what builds character, right?

Once Kirsten reassured me my manuscript had a chance with a targeted audience (the modern-day domesticated homemaker), and with Jamie’s assurances as a multitasking Mom herself, I immediately felt more confident that my stories would spark those stay-at-home dads to “get off their rear and volunteer.” Whether helping grade papers for their kids’ school, chaperoning field trips, or just playing tetherball during recess with the other kids, all I was trying to drive home was that in a short few hours out of a dad’s schedule, we all have multiple hats to wear throughout the day. I was able to write about all the variables I overcame with four boys — two of which are living at home while attending college, and two of which have special needs — and being a husband, all the while being a Watch D.O.G.S. (Dads of Great Students) Chairman for my sons’ school district, comprised of twenty-three elementary and middle schools and is combined with the PTA Executive Board.

Though I was skeptical of being a newbie author, Kristen Ringer lightened the load over the time it took to get to my Author Representative, Jamie Rath … and Jamie flawlessly choreographed the next sequence of events in that she always treated me like a person, with genuine dedication and not like a “herd” of cattle, quarterbacking from afar. This was like a mile relay with the handoff of the baton being swiftly executed in the exchange zone, or what we call in the track and field community, the “changeover box.” The changeover box is where the next leg or runner has ten meters to build up speed to take the baton onto the next relay. Kirsten and Jamie did just that. The epitome of Five-Star Platinum Customer Service is at the tip of its spear in Kirsten’s and Jamie’s work ethic and bottom line. They should be the trainers in their industry that others should emulate.

Phone calls and email follow ups … who does that nowadays? Who actually cares to see the end product succeed to the next evolution and in this case to print? Kirsten and Jamie do care, bottom line, no bravo sierra. They are your “real deal” and the epitome of what we hold close to our chest in my community of Warriors: Honor, Courage, and Commitment, hands-down. Only because of their compassion and unwavering genuine determination to assist a new writer, much like a clutch quarterback navigates the football field, would I possibly write a sequel in the future.

Please recognize Jamie Rath and Kristen Ringer at your next board meeting or Outskirts Press function; they unequivocally deserve it. Best regards and thank you for your time.

Very respectfully,

E. J. Morris, U.S. Navy (Ret)


We agree that Jamie and Kirsten deserves great appreciation for the work they do — and so too do all of our Author Representatives, Publishing Consultants, and other expert staff, all of whom work tirelessly on behalf of our Outskirts Press authors to produce the best possible experience and finished products: beautifully designed and marketed books that reflect each author’s voice and desire. And while we all eagerly await a sequel from Doc Morris, we hope that you too will consider publishing a work with us.

You can find Doc Morris’ The Modern Day Mr. Mom on Amazon or in the Outskirts Press Bookstore at www.OutskirtsPress.com/Bookstore.

To learn more about our work, please visit our homepage at www.OutskirtsPress.com, where you can find out more information about us and what we do, as well as use our website’s live chat feature to speak with one of our expert staff.

 

It’s Baaaaaack! Another Chance to SAVE 19% on Your Publishing Package

The New Year is the perfect opportunity to check the resolution to publish off your list and start the year as a published author. So, we’re bringing back your chance to ring in 2019 with 19% OFF the Ultimate or Full-Color publishing package. It’s the perfect way to achieve one of your greatest goals early in the year … and meet a money-saving goal you didn’t even know you had.

To claim your 19% savings, simply enter the promo code Save19Now at checkout when you purchase the Ultimate or Full-Color publishing package from Outskirts Press. It’s as easy as that! Resolve to publish in 2019 and Outskirts Press will be there to help every step of the way.

Best of all, you don’t even need a finished manuscript to take advantage of Outskirts Press publishing sales! In fact, by selecting your publishing package ahead of time, your team of experts will be ready to go the moment your writing is done.

Just remember, this is a limited-time offer, so don’t delay!

Would you like help choosing your best self-publishing option? Connect with Outskirts Press now in whatever manner is easiest for you:

 

Reach Your Audience(s): Get 4 Ebook Formats FREE When You Publish Now

We’ve said it often, but it bears repeating: The easier it is for people to purchase your book, the more likely they will! In other words, give them as many options to buy as humanly possible. Remember this one selling credo and you’ll instantly increase your sales potential.

While many bibliophiles crave the smell of freshly printed paperbacks and hardcover books, the ebook market continues to expand. Young readers are growing up with e-readers, and older readers continue to embrace new technologies as well. Cater to as many of these reading tastes as possible; each format you offer gives you access to millions of readers in that format or bookstore.

Outskirts Press wants to help you reach your audiences with 4 ebook formats FREE with Ultimate or Full-Color publishing. When you self-publish with this offer, we’ll give you free Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble NOOK, Apple iPad/iPhone and Google Book editions of your book to go with the paperback format that is already part of your publishing package. That’s nearly $1,000 in free publishing options to make your book instantly available to millions of readers worldwide!

To claim your FREE Kindle, NOOK, Apple and Google ebook editions, purchase the Ultimate or Full-Color publishing package while this limited offer lasts and enter promo code 4EbookPromo at checkout. The free ebook editions will be added to your account within 48 hours.

Would you like help choosing your best self-publishing option? Connect with Outskirts Press now in whatever manner is easiest for you:

 

Feel the Power: Choose Your Own Promo for the Perfect New Year’s Savings

If you’re still mulling over plans to self-publish, let 2019 be the year you make it happen—on your own terms.

This January, there’s no need to settle for a deal that doesn’t fit. That’s why Outskirts press is giving you the freedom in this new year to select the best self-publishing savings for you. We’ve resurrected your favorite promotions from 2018 and offered them again—only this time you get to tell us what the deal is. This is your only chance to call the shots!

It’s very straightforward: Purchase the Ultimate or Full-Color publishing package during this limited-time offer, and you can choose the promotion that’s perfect for you:

  • 15% off plus free Kindle Ebook Edition – promo code: 15plus-Kindle
  • Free Kindle/NOOK/iPad ebook package – promo code: Ebooks-Free18
  • $300 spending credit – promo code: 300-Spending
  • 17% off Ultimate or Full-Color Publishing – promo code: LuckyDay
  • Triple author copies – promo code: Triplecopies
  • Free Custom Cover – promo code: Custom-Free
  • Free package upgrade (Buy Basic publishing, receive the Ultimate package. Or, buy the Ultimate, get Full-Color.) – promo code: Upgrade-July18
  • Free Amazon Launch Bundle – promo code: AmazonLaunch-Nov18
  • Free editing down payment plus copyright registration – promo code: FreeCopyEdit
  • Free paperback, hardback and Kindle – promo code: Buy1-Get3

Plus, if One-Click Publishing is more to your liking, here’s one more promotion you can choose:

Go ahead, let all that freedom go to your head—you’ve earned the privilege!

To claim any promotion your heart desires, simply:

  1. Purchase the Ultimate or Full-Color publishing package (or the One-Click Publishing package of your choosing, if that’s more your speed)
  2. Enter the corresponding promo code at checkout

Would you like help choosing your best self-publishing option? Connect with Outskirts Press now in whatever manner is easiest for you: