A fellow blogger recounted reading a badly proofread manuscript wherein the author was talking about billboards and looked up to see 20-foot tall feces. By the time she realized the author meant faces, the image of the 20-foot feces was firmly embedded in her brain. It signalled the end of any production relationship between her and that book. I pointed out we now share the same image. It is firmly stuck in my mind, so thanks for sharing. That’s why I’ve passed it along. Something this good needs to be shared, don’t you think?
There are so many categories of text errors.
There are the incomplete words when I don’t type the final couple of letters, tradition for traditional, ever instead of every, want instead of wanted. Nope, spell checker won’t find these.
How about brain glitches, the ones that happen when your conscious mind intends one word, but your fingers type a different one. I sometimes look at them and wonder, “Where did that come from?” It’s particularly embarrassing if the word is a homonym — too for two, you’re for your, one for won. It makes you look ignorant. I know perfectly well what it ought to be. But I had a glitch, a little power flicker of my cranial function. Oops.
Then, there is my nemesis: or for of and vice versa. It’s my mega typo. It happens so often it’s scary. I almost never catch it. It slips past my proofreading. I find it months later when I’m reading old posts. The spell checker won’t find it because the words are correctly spelled but are the wrong words. That’s the problem with spell checkers. They only check spelling. They can’t (yet … but I live in hope) figure out what you meant to say.
Some of this stuff only happens to touch typists. Fast typists. The fingers speed on ahead of brain functions.
Time to add those cut and paste errors. You know, when you delete text, but leave a little snippet or two behind? And, of, the, but, then or whatever, little words hanging around like tiny grenades. Guaranteed to make you look like a moron.
Among the darkest of my dark secrets are the words I can’t spell, my assassin words. These guys are out to get me. No matter how many times I use them, I don’t get them right.
If I can spell chrysanthemum, how come I misspell truely (I mean truly sorry) 90% of the time? Truly looks like its missing its “e.” It does. Really. At least these are actually misspelled so the spellchecker will catch them.
And so, dear readers, my imperfections lay exposed to your cold glare. I mean to get it right. I try. I just … don’t.
- What is your funniest typo? (painfulenglish.wordpress.com)
- I before E, except here (terriblywrite.wordpress.com)
- Loose or lose? Looser or loser? (painfulenglish.wordpress.com)
- Their, there and they’re – picking the right option (alifelessordinaryds.wordpress.com)
- Fraught with errors (terriblywrite.wordpress.com)