Sunday, May 16, 2010

Mistakes in Live Fire - A Reader Writes

Just got a message through Facebook from a reader complaining about mistakes in Live Fire.

Midge Bork 16 May at 15:34
I've read a bunch of the Dan Sheppard books. Got turned on to them by an English friend. I just finished Live Fire and it was a real struggle. There are so many blantant errors that I found it difficult to focus on the storyline.

1) The professhor shows up with a computer and asked to plug into the plama telelvision. They tell him it's an LCD but that he can use it anyway. He proceeds to walk over to the plasma screen. (NO! It's not plasma...)

2) The security guard asked to see identification, either a passport or driver's license. He hands over his passport. The guard compares his face to the picture on his license. (NO! He didn't have the license in his hand. It's a passport!)

3) Sheppard walks in with a container of Starbucks tea and proceeds to drink the coffee. (No feat!)

There were more. There are just hte ones that come to mind. Who reads your manusripts and lets this stuff get by? I'm really disappointed.

Here's my reply....

Terrible isn't it? Editing standards have fallen in recent years. I blame New Labour. Though I should mention that the errors in your email made it difficult to concentrate on your message - it's Shepherd not Sheppard. Professor not professhor. Licence not license. The not hte. See, everyone makes mistakes! But I do take your point. You pay good money to buy a book and you should expect to get one that is free from mistakes. I'm not sure what the answer is, Midge. Editors have to work a lot harder than they used to and their increased workload does mean that more mistakes get through. When they are pointed out they are corrected, but I do understand your frustration. It feels as if publishers are now operating the same way as Microsoft, putting out a version of Windows riddled with mistakes and then correcting them as they go along. I hate that and can understand readers who feel disappointed when they buy a book containing mistakes. I'll pass your email on to my editor and ask for corrections to be made!

Best wishes,


To be honest, the plasma/LCD is my mistake because I'm not really sure what the difference is and I don't really care! I think the tea thing is probably not a mistake - Shepherd has a cup of tea for Charlie and a coffee for himself. The licence/passport is a mistake, and its mine. Mea culpa. I shall punish myself severely.

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