Tuesday, August 26, 2008

I Don't The Blame Author

I am pages away from finishing "Are You There, Vodka? It's Me, Chelsea" and I am thoroughly enjoying it. To me this one is better overall than "My Horizontal Life" in terms of laughs per page and sheer craziness and she truly a Sedaris on steroids.

What I couldn't believe were the mistakes. Chelsea mentions her father back in 1984, having a 1967 Yugo. This would be hard to do, considering Yugos didn’t go into production until 1981 and didn't come to America until 1985. He could've had a grey market Yugo, but it wouldn't have been a '67 model. Chelsea's dad could've had a Fiat, which the Yugo was based on, but it would have been a bigger, though just as embarrassing Fiat.

She also mentions Googling someone in 1996 and uh, Google wasn't official until 1997.

Put the rocks down before you think I am being hard on Chelsea, I don't fault her at all. She is allowed artistic license and the human memory is only so reliable. Not to mention the real intention of this post besides touting an excellent book is to slam the publisher.

You see, the publisher keeps people on staff to check facts and before the thing goes to press, they have proofreaders and an editor or two, that should bother to check up on things. It's what they get paid for, to edit. Before you think I am being too hard on the editors? Go to page 208, the second paragraph and check out the third line and fourth lines...

"I ran out the door and jumped into my dark blue Volvo. I drove to the end of the alleyway, then slammed on the breaks when I saw three young teenage girls wearing backpacks, crossing."

The "breaks?" Are we talking about an old school Kurtis Blow song? Or are we talking about stopping a car?

Note that you will find plenty of misspellings, typos and things that cause Messrs. Strunk and White to spin in their graves on this blog, but you will never find me misteaking (sic) "breaks."


Dale said...

That's pretty incredible. I'm always amazed when I find errors in actual published works. Perhaps we should become editors?

John said...

Trust me, the ladies love the editors fellahs.


Cormac Brown said...


Other than seeing obvious errors in the works of others, I could not be an editor. I edited this post on Microsoft Word and all the red and green on the page made this post look just like the Italian flag.


Judging from your Facebook friend number, you are correct sir!

Tanya Espanya said...

Am waiting for this book from the liberry.

John said...

"Facebook whore am I."

Send me your email address again - everyone send me their addresses again. The death of two internal HDs and the external backup HD means I lost my life. :(

WWW.JohnDonaldCarlucci.com is up now C-man.


Cormac Brown said...


You will especially dig it.


I've linked your new page and will be sending you the email addresses.

Baroness von Bloggenschtern said...

I have been reading countless books this summer where some asshat editor has missed GLARING typos.

Usage errors? Those are artistic license to me. But spelling? C'mon people!

Quin Browne said...

it's like finding factual errors in films... makes me CRAZY

ie elizabeth: the golden age, showed westies in one scene... the breed was just developed in 1900 or so.

another film had an actor using a leather bound journal he kept closed with a big rubber band... in 1880.

um, no?

Cormac Brown said...


If you can't depend on books to get it right, what does that say about our society?


Films don't even try anymore and in the case of Universal, they have little choice. That company fired their crack research staff ages ago (before this latest round of boutique and semi-independent studios getting the axe) and other studios would call them up with questions too.