I hope this blog post finds you we’ll.
LOLZ. That’s not the real typo, but it could be if I typed it on my mobile—with its aggressive autocorrect that loves an apostrophe.
So, the other day, my mum called me. How nice. Except she wasn’t calling to talk knitting or to check on the grandkids. She’d found a typo in one of my books.
The kind that ruins a career.
Suddenly, everything fell apart.
My books were pulled from the shelves.
My newsletter subscribers fled for the hills.
Within an hour, Reader’s Digest published a blog post to have all my work banned.
No, none of that’s true. Gotcha again!
Before it was published, my mum kindly read a proof copy of the book.
The typo didn’t ruin my career. But it was the most hilarious typo the world has ever seen!
See if you can spot it...
Not seen it yet? How about now...
My mum didn't want to say the typo over the phone, in case Jesus was listening in. But I have it on good authority there is no internet in heaven, so here is the typo highlighted and underlined...
If you are wondering, this is what I think the possible meaning of my world-class typo could be:
The very worst of all the colours. Used to describe a person or object that will stamp on your soul in pure, unquenchable rage.
“His eyes turned bitch black.”
I can tell you might have a followup question. “How could an author make such a silly error?”
Let’s get something clear:
Authors are not editors. And they’re not proofreaders either.
Of course, we should all take care to clean up our writing and be conscious of grammar and spelling.
Especially with your/you’re.
PLEASE. It’s “you’re welcome,” not “your welcome.”
It’s “you’re beautiful,” not “your beautiful,” unless we’re talking about “your beautiful [NOUN].” As in, “I stole your beautiful sports car and now it’s mine.”
That said, the best authors I know make typos and spelling mistakes and write things before they’ve had coffee.
They know which words will have the most power, and in what order.
They know the words to hook the reader into their world and take them on a wonderful adventure. They know how to create authentic emotions that jump off the page. They know how to make you fall in love with a fictional character, or make you want to punch them in the crotch.
But sometimes, they don’t spell those words right.
And that’s why editors and proofreaders are wonderful people. Professionals and volunteers who love stories and willingly spare their time to help authors.
They’re not bitch black. They’re hawk-eyed hot pink.
So, thank you if you are one of those people who have ever kindly pointed out a typo. It is much appreciated!