Apr 16 2019

Needs Editing #AtoZChallenge #Writing #BookReviews as an #Author


Zeugma

Writing Book Reviews As An Author

Inspiration To Make It Easier

By: J Lenni Dorner

#AtoZChallenge 2019 Tenth Anniversary blogging from A to Z challenge letter N
is for needs editing

Was the editing done well? If not, provide up to a dozen examples of failure types, mentioning the locations in the book.

There are three good reasons to include editing information in a review.

  1. Readers want to know if a book is well-edited before they buy it. Your review can be a quality assurance.
  2. The author might notice the errors mentioned in your review and then go fix those issues. (You might also try to contact the author directly for major errors, especially historical or factual inaccuracies of which you have proof.)
  3. You might be wrong. This gives editors a reason to check. Also, you’re an author, and authors have always been the ones to craft and reshape languages. So you may spark a conversation that results in you becoming right.

Why only note up to a dozen errors? https://www.denisecowleeditorial.com/blog/why-the-grammar-police-arent-cool This article covers the reasoning. It’s a quality control check by you, a reader. The purpose isn’t to bully or belittle. Nor are you being paid to find these issues, and as such there’s no need to correct everything.

On the more positive side of editing notes:

Has the author crafted the language with a zeugma, or with a poem that changes meaning when read from bottom to top or every other line? Has the author mastered showing rather than telling, with adjectives not being used to tell readers how to feel but rather making the readers feel descriptions? (This is about language mastery and use. That falls apart if not edited properly.)

#AtoZChallenge 2019 Tenth Anniversary badge
Question: How important is it to you that a book be well-edited?

— J, Co-host and Team Captain #AtoZChallenge


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10 comments

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  1. I struggle with books that have too many typos or glaring editing errors – like inconsistencies. I give an editing score but only point out errors if I take off more than a star. I have in rare cases contacted the author rather than post an overly critical review cold.
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    1. I’ve contacted two or three. In one case, it was how I learned about another dialect of English of which I was not familiar.
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  2. I feel like it is important to frame the editing feedback in reviews. If you only talk about all the typos you fished out, it gives the impression that that is the only part of the book worth talking about. I have the same experience on my blog sometimes, when someone who’s never commented before just stops by to say “there is a typo in line 3.” It is hurtful. Pointing out editing mistakes? Absolutely. Also saying other things? Yes, please.

    Also, I just learned what a zeugma is. I have only known it as a city beofre. Lovely! Thank you 🙂

    The Multicolored Diary
    Tarkabarka has this post to share N is for Naran White (A to Z Challenge 2019: Fruit Folktales)My Profile
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    1. Yes, it’s just one part of the review process. That’s why there’s a whole book. 😉
      Anything can have a mistake or two. People are often leary of Indie authors if they aren’t sure about the editing.
      Glad I could tell you about zeugmas!
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  3. I do mention typos/grammar issues in my reviews — especially if they bothered me endlessly. But I don’t give every example there is: they’ll have to pay me for my services 😉
    Ronel Janse van Vuuren has this post to share More Great Music and Lyrics #AtoZChallengeMy Profile
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    1. Yup, same. I’ll only list a few.
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  4. In most instances, editing is as important as that necessary appealing cover. If the cover gets the reader to open the book but the content is in shambles, the reader will feel cheated by the false promise.
    On the other hand, when a reader knows the author, the editing often becomes secondary to the storyline and only when the book becomes unreadable will a reader feel let down.
    http://gail-baugniet.blogspot.com/
    (AtoZ Theme: very short stories/various genres)
    N is for: Narthex, Nave, and Exorcisms
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    1. Very true. Thanks for stopping by.
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    • JOY on April 16, 2019 at 8:52 PM
    • Reply

    i agree about #1 personally. sometimes i pay money for an ebook and it’s rubbish with terrible editing mistakes and those little boxes appear constantly in the page. that can be frustrating to a reader for sure and it’s helpful to know about before spending the $ since there’s no returns on ebooks.

    Joy at The Joyous Living
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    1. I’ve gotten a refund on the money for an ebook on Amazon. (It was flat out plagiarism of several works.) But you can’t get your time back.
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