Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Reviewer's Tip - Stories from our Reviewers

This week, we thought we'd share some stories about various book layout blunders from our reviewers.  Enjoy and don't try these on your books!!!

>>In one book, a dot leader in the ToC ran to the right margin, then there was half a dot leader under that, and the half a dot leader led to the page number. Which was the wrong page.

>>Another book: on several pages, the illustration (maybe 1 1/2" wide x 2 or 3" tall) was set in the middle of the page. In the middle of sentences. Which meant that the reader's eye had to make that 1 1/2" leap in every sentence a dozen times or more. Extremely hard to read. And the publisher used cheap paper. You could see through it. And when I mentioned this in my review, the author got so mad at me that she hasn't spoken to me in a dozen years. True!

>>I had one recently that had "its" as "it's" nearly every time, plus other errors of gooder English on every single page, plus the page numbers were in the gutter and someone decided that a paragraph could not be divided between pages, so the bottom margin varied from an inch and a half to half an inch.

>>One spelled "foreword" as "forward."

>>One I declined to review had a Forward and an Afterwards.

>>(Not bad layout, but interesting) When I was working on my Ph.D. dissertation back in the days of microfilm and microfiche, I spent many a day with my head in a film or fiche reader. One of the plays I was examining was extant only on microfiche. It had originally (in 1658 or thereabouts) been printed on vellum and used old lettering. So I was reading 17th-century English (with the funny long S's) and seeing both sides of the page at the same time. That was fun.

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