Errors of Quality

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When I conducted a seminar on fiction writing, not surprisingly, the question of self-publishing popped up.

The general slant is – self-published books are of a poorer quality. There is much truth in this – but to tar the entire community? The implication is – books that go through a publishing house’s mill are of higher quality. There is obvious truth in this.

The idea is never to put down anyone but to encourage everyone.

Therefore, I pull out my ready list of books from publishing houses, including contemporary best sellers that contain errors – typos, sentence structure, inconsistencies in storyline, book cover, and so forth. These publishers have the services of professionals. What chance for the rest of us? The established authors have paid their dues, I reckon, and one should celebrate their success. The rest of us in the herd are held to higher standards – perhaps rightly so, until we too pay the dues that we owe our readers.

The occasional minor error is okay, I suppose. However, beyond a tipping point -

The idea arguably is not to be perfect, though this would be super, but to minimize errors such that readers either don’t spot or chose to overlook them – because the storyline, the characters and style by themselves are so captivating, distracting and marvellously enjoyable.

Perhaps that’s why I continue to relish a well written book – whether self-published or legacy published. And when I notice the occasional error, a smile – they’re human too – and I’m too busy enjoying the page turner.

What is your take on this – as readers and authors?

********** Copyright @ Eric Alagan, 2014 ************

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