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I have always hated page proofs. I am reading the Luna version of page proofs now -- and by this I mean the last thing I'll see before I get my hands on the actual book. This is the last chance I have to catch all the mistakes I made before the book goes into production.

I read carefully; I find the Author's Alteration pages to be harder, though. Most other page proofs I've proofread are essentially what the printed page will look like. The AAs, as they are affectionately called, are double spaced Courier, in 12pt, with line numbers down the left side.

I work in Courier, and so this looks like manuscript to me, and it's much harder for me to see the things I actually typed (as opposed to the ones I thought I did) in this format. I would almost pay money to see the actual page proof pages because I think I would catch a lot more than I obviously did.

On the other hand, I'm almost resigned to missing things. Because, of course, while rereading parts of Secret for background for a section of Chaos, the first thing I noticed in the published book was... a typo. V.V.

I also have GST return forms, but I have to get the AAs back as soon as possible (and honestly, I would rather read these than do the taxes).

So... I am sitting in front of my computer, making a post instead of continuing to work on them. This, sadly, is the fine art of procrastination. I also created a Twitter account. Because, yes, procrastinating. I updated my very under-updated web page. Someone elsewhere used the word "multi-crastination", and I find myself living up to it...


Apr. 8th, 2009 05:58 am (UTC)
My only connection to the industry is that I read, so the only thing I can add here is how I'm constantly surprised by how few errors end up in books. Especially in series books! So many details that could get dropped!

And then boom, I'll find a best-seller-hard-back-big-money book with big typos and continuity errors. ::shrugs:: What can you do? Things just slip by sometimes, I guess.
Apr. 8th, 2009 06:46 pm (UTC)
My connection to the industry is that I'm the production person who deals with this stuff. :-)

The big bestsellers with all the errors typically happen because the publisher is in a tremendous hurry to get the book to press and have it start earning its keep, rather than dawdling through an 8-to-10-month production cycle.

The other problem is that publishers of big bestseller fiction typically have long lists and short staff. People start cutting corners. The big bestsellers sometimes get short attention from lazy production people because "the book will sell anyway."

At my previous place of employ, we in the paperback division were contemptuous of certain people in the hardcover division because they printed slop. (Not everyone, just certain teams.) We were forever cleaning up after them and making a million correx for our editions. It was clearly the individuals, because they didn't have heavier workload than anyone else. They were just plain bad at that part of their job.

Which is a long-winded way of saying that anything dependent on human input is only as good as the humans doing the work.
Apr. 8th, 2009 08:06 pm (UTC)
That makes perfect sense actually. I always thought they'd spend more time because of the extra scrutiny, but I guess that isn't always the case.