Monthly Archives: December 2013

Using Google+ and Pinterest to Broaden Your Reach

Google + button

Google+ is slowly becoming the new ‘hangout’ on the web and it’s probably because it features the hangout feature. This is an wonderful feature where you can follow chats with friends similar to private messaging in FB and chat on Twitter only it’s in very real time. You can also set up group hangouts and talk to several people at once. I love this. Even better, the hangout feature allows you to have video chats, both individual and group.

I’m still getting used to all the things that Google+ does but I believe once it catches on, it’s going to really catch on! In the meantime, it’s also a great place to meet new people, make new friends, Google+ screenshotnetwork, and post your thoughts, share your ideas, talk about you, your blog, your book, or whatever strikes your fancy.

I highly recommend checking out Google+ and start growing your circles of friends and followers.  It’s a wonderful way to broaden your reach.

 

 

Pinterest share buttonNow, about Pinterest – well, I’ll just say this: Pinterest is one of the most addicting sites you can visit. If you haven’t got time to spend at least an hour perusing all of the delights on Pinterest, don’t go until you do.

Pinterest.com is a place where people share their favorite everythings. It’s also a great place to promote yourself, your blog, your favorite things, and your books. Set up a board, pin some of your favorite things there, pin from others’ boards to yours and watch your followers list grow. Set up a board specifically for your books, your favorite reads, your favorite delights, or whatever strikes your fancy. It’s fun, it’s addicting, and it’s also a good place to find new things, meet new people and just have fun.

When I first joined Pinterest soon after it was created, I set up a writing inspiration board. Every so often, I visit it and update my inspiration. After all, a writer’s inspiration can change as quickly as our muse decides it should  –  which is way too often. When I see something that just makes me say ooh, I pin it to a board so I have it for later. I may never use it but it sure is nice to look at.

Check out Pinterest if you haven’t already but I’m giving you fair warning now, be prepared to waste a whole lot of time there. There is just so much to see!

Happy Writing Everyone!

The Most Commonly Missed Editing Errors That Can Ruin A Great Read

Bad editing

As a reader, as well as nit-picky editor, I get very discouraged when I find major errors in a finished work that might have otherwise been a fabulous read, if only it hadn’t made me stop and think about what should have been written there instead.  I always have to wonder what the editor or proofreader was doing while giving the work its final read. Did they just run it through spell check or grammar check and hope that all the boo boos were caught?

Continuity Errors:

Continuity errors can consist of such things as wrong dates, number of items used by a character repeatedly throughout the story, the color of hair or eyes, or nicknames for characters. As the creator of a world, action, or character, you don’t want your readers stopping midst the action of the story to wonder if they imagined the number of husbands someone had or the color of the hero’s hair or eyes as wrong. I see this happen far too often. It can happen to any of us. Most likely it happens because as the author was writing she/he decided to make a change but didn’t catch all of the places in the work that needed replacing. Frankly, it’s an easy switch out to make if your program has a find and replace feature. But then again, an objective second set of eyes will inevitably help.

Missing words:

A missed word here or there can happen to the best of us. Our brains tend to move faster than our fingers on a keyboard and if an author is writing longhand, it’s guaranteed that a word or two will get dropped as the story unfolds. When an author reads over what’s been written, she/he is too close to the story to always catch these holes in the prose. Our brains will fill in the blanks without us realizing anything is awry. A good editor should always find these holes that can cause a reader to trip through the words.

But THE worst error in my book of things that can wrong:

Wrong Names!

Yes, the wrong name being used at the wrong moment can send a reader into a tailspin causing them to read and reread a line, a paragraph, or even go back pages to reread thinking they’ve missed something. I know, as a reader, I’ve done it. I’ve even read books where a character’s name from a completely different work showed up in place of a character in the current one. Very disconcerting, distracting, and frankly, it can take a lot away from the scene and the overall impact the book has as a whole.

My point is that nothing beats a second or third pair of eyes to ensure that everything in a book is copacetic and exact in order to tell the author’s story in its best light. No program, no spell check, or grammar check can spot all of the missing words, no proofreading program that simply looks for misspellings can catch a he where it should be a she or a wrong name, wrong color of eyes, or a missing word that might change the entire aspect of a scene. The only way to catch these errors is with the reader’s eye.

When I read a book, I want to enjoy it. I read many ARCs (Advanced Reader Copies) and so expect to find errors – after all, it’s not always complete – and so I allow my brain to fill in the holes where words should be and hope that someone somewhere has caught the error before it goes to print. But at the same time, I always worry about those wrong names, wrong hair color, and other things that skew the story. I worry that they weren’t caught and are going to worm their way into the final publication and so, yet another potentially great read goes down with a less than stellar effect on the reader. This is why I created Romancing Editorially, to help those authors whose works need that nit-picky, detail-oriented, pain-in-the-ass person to look at every aspect of their manuscript and hopefully catch those nasty errors so they don’t ruin a great read.

So what errors in novels drive you nuts and keep you from just relaxing into the story?

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