How to defuse publication errors

Editor offers suggestions on how to prevent post-publication problems.

Editor offers suggestions on how to prevent post-publication problems

Those are among the many “landmines” I’ve found in my newsletter in just the past year or so. Who planted them or how they got there is not important.

What’s really important is how to disarm ticking typos such as these before they explode on someone else’s desk, and you get hit by the fallout.

In other words, how can good proofing prevent post-publication problems?

Plain sight

As Edgar Allan Poe pointed out in The Purloined Letter, what we search for is often “hidden in plain sight.” The months of “Juny” and “Decemberrr” appeared in boldfaced type in the folios of draft layouts. Apparently the designer’s haste to change June to July on an existing layout left us awkwardly straddling the cusp of these summer editions. In the “Decemberrr” issue, the typo supposedly resulted from a heavy hand, although someone suggested it was actually a design element as it was unusually cold that month.

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