Tuesday, 31 July 2012

An editor is never really on holiday...

We were away on holiday last week, in Scarborough. We had a great time, and great weather - and the kids loved the beach, the pool and the change of scene. I took some proofreading work with me in hopeful expectation, and didn't do it, which is perhaps a good thing - it is important to have proper time off, even when you love your job and are self-employed. But I realised that I am never really off-duty. This was the most amusing typo of the holiday by far, and I couldn't resist photographing it:

In second place came a label on a Model-T Ford at the wonderful Scarborough Fair Collection, which declared that the model was in production from 1098-1927. That's a long time!

And I was disheartened to see, on a cafe menu, "specialtity tea's" - I could forgive them the spelling, perhaps, but not the apostrophe as well.

Regrettably, I've forgotten the name of the pub I saw which was festooned with an advertising banner displaying the pub's name and details of forthcoming events. Sadly, the pub's name was spelled wrong on the banner, which was hung right next to the foot-high letters on the pub wall showing the correct spelling. Whoops.

This week I'm back at my desk and finally tackling my pile of proofreading - hoping to avoid blunders of my own!

Thursday, 12 July 2012

New books, please!

It seems strange, so soon after the launch of Breastfeeding: stories to inspire and inform, to be thinking about future projects. There's still so much work to be done to spread the word about that book, that it would be easy to do nothing else. But a commissioning editor (one of my many hats!) always needs to be thinking about the future, because books, as projects, have such long lead times.

So with that in mind this week I'm turning at least some of my thoughts to Lonely Scribe's forthcoming titles. Next on the list is a biography of Peter Scott, son of Scott of the Antarctic and founder of the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust. That's a new edition of an existing biography, so in some ways there is less work for us to do: we don't need to copy-edit, but we do need to proofread because the text has been scanned in, which can generate errors. We also need to create a new jacket for the book.

After that we've got a lovely book on the horizon: The Anthology of Hope, compiled by Campbell Steven. This book deserves a blog post all of its own, and it will get one, but for now, to whet appetites, I will just say this: it's a collection of inspiring snippets of texts, one for every day of the year, a mixture of secular and religious, organised into themes. It was originally self-published and represents a real labour of love by its author. Lonely Scribe hopes to find many new readers for this little-known gem. (Maisie Steven, Campbell's wife, is the author of our delightful memoir of a Scottish childhood, The Heart is Highland. That book too deserves a blog post of its own; I will add that to my lengthy to-do list!)

Thirdly, at the launch of Breastfeeding I met up with my good friend Verity Croft, who contributed her story of breastfeeding twins to the book. She's both a twin, and a mum of twins (and, indeed, her twin has twins). Verity's also a passionate advocate for natural birth and a childbirth educator who has run her own birth preparation classes. We've agreed that a book provisionally entitled Twin Births: stories to inspire and inform, to sit alongside Home Births and Breastfeeding, would be a great addition to our list. She's already got the project well underway and is busy inviting contributors to the book. If you, or someone you know, would like to be involved, contact us. There's now a Facebook page for that book where we hope to get some discussion going, so 'like' it to keep abreast of developments! We're hoping the book will be published in spring 2013.