Typography (Booking through Thursday)

This week’s meme:

You may or may not have seen my post at Punctuality Rules Tuesday, about a book I recently bought that had the actual TITLE misspelled on the spine of the book. A glaring typographical error that really (really!) should have been caught. So, using that as a springboard, today’s question: What’s the worst typographical error you’ve ever found in (or on) a book?

I have two huge pet peeves that sometimes make it into published books: using “loose” for “lose” and “phased” for “fazed.” But these aren’t exactly typographical errors–they’re spelling errors that should have been caught. As far as typos are concerned (missing letters and the like), I actually think they’re kind of cool, a reminder of the human hands that the book I’m reading has passed through on its way to me. I’ve never seen anything as horrific as a title misspelled. That’s insanity!

I did some copy editing at an old job and absolutely hated it. Unfortunately, I was the only one qualified to do it, mainly because I was the only one who noticed the errors! I’ve always been good at spelling and grammar (and thanks to Cranium I learned that I am good at spelling backwards, too). Even though I read quickly, I am always stopped dead by typos and misspellings and errors. And when I was responsible for making people fix them they made me insane. I can be very, very detail oriented when I need to be, and that was not always endearing to my colleagues.

There is one spelling thing that’s making me crazy right now, though it’s not in a book, it’s on TV. There’s a character on “The Real World” named Shauvon. Now, if I was reading that name in a book I would assume it was pronounced Shaw’-von, wouldn’t you? But it’s not. It’s pronounced like Shavonne, or Siobhan if wanna get all Gaelic up in here. I am not saying that people can’t give their kids creatively spelled names… or at least I have accepted the fact that I can’t do anything to make it stop (Madysin, Jazzmyn, etc). But the spelling should at least WORK, don’t you think?

Last night’s work read was a manuscript that featured no typos.

15 thoughts on “Typography (Booking through Thursday)”

  1. I too notice typos and grammatical mistakes. Maybe because I am teacher and I have to correct!

    I have known to correct bank statements , any applications or such like.

    Happy BTT!

  2. I worked with a physicist from Louisiana once. He told me a lady in his church named her daughter a name pronounced ‘Oh-rang-uh-dee’. She explained that in the hospital she couldn’t think of a name, and saw something comforting on the billboard that just seemed right.


    In US Navy Aviation Electronics School at NAS Millington, TN, I was starting the program for an aviation electronics technician. The early courses were programmed instruction. And I caught several typos in each volume. The typos that made the technical material incorrect I reported to the chief in charge. The fourth time I turned in a list of typos with my lesson, the senior chief in charge called me on the carpet and chewed me out.

    I left the school shortly after that. Who knows what might have happened.

  3. Madchen Amick is on Viva Laughlin, premiering tonight at 10 EST. I thought she was dead. Although, I do think that’s how you spell ‘Madchen’…anyway, I look forward to seeing her lip synch to classic rock with Hugh Jackman.

  4. pronounced names can drive me crazy sometime. Unless it had a nice ring to it that just fit. Sometime I love the different pronouncced names and other time….it confusing…but funny confusing hehehe

  5. Hey Superfast, long time no see.

    Brad – that reminds me of the chapter in Freakonomics (an amazing book by Stephen Dubner and Steven Levitt) about names. He brings up this very thing… a parent names her kids two names pronounced Le-MON-zhello and Or-AN-zhello and spelled:


    Superfast – I, too, have a soft spot in my heart for typos. One time a poem of mine was published and somewhere along the line all the letters with carons (^) over them turned into ampersands (&).

    Oh – and I FINALLY posted a blog report on my book reading challenge (or not so challenge, as the case may be). It’s on my latest Thursday Thirteen.

  6. This reminds me of a name I saw in the local paper once: T’sari. Not sure what effect that apostrophe has on pronounciation . . . I always wonder whatever possessed the parents when I hear of odd/unpronouncable names because I have one myself and haven’t enjoyed the experience.

  7. Amazing, the things we learn while playing Cranium games, isn’t it?

    I answered today, too. Nothing nearly as cool as yours, though. Except that when I worked as a copy editor, I liked the work.

    Well enough.

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