Copy Editing & First Editions

April 29, 2012

My friends are so amusing.  Several of them who have read, hot-off-the-press, my new novel THE PROVIDER have discovered copy-editing flaws: spellings or typos.  Each one of these friends claims to be an excellent copy editor and makes the identical comment, “I get so angry when I see an error. Where was your editor?”

Ironically, each of these angry friends spotted different flaws.  In other words, each missed all the flaws that the other readers found.

This means I could not have hired any of them to be my official copy editor.

I suppose the mainline publishers put their applicants for the job of copy editor through such a rigorous series of tests that none of my friends couple qualify.

The question my friends raise is this: Why aren’t these errors found before the book is published?

Answer: There is no end to copy editing. Tony Morrison corrects her novels for years after publication.  Henry James, same.

I already have a revised edition of THE PROVIDER as an eBook. And the next printing of the hard copy will be revised. And each printing thereafter will be altered. So I say to those people who collect first editions, you miss a lot.