Mystery author Camille Minichino is this week's guest. She definitely has a point--I detest typos!
Twice a year, members of Sisters in Crime of Northern California host a "showcase" where we're invited to read from our newly published work. One after the other, usually about 8 or 9 of us at any given event, stand behind the podium and read a selected passage. Maybe the first chapter, maybe a particularly funny or gripping section from the middle. We have 5 minutes.
Question: How many typos can you expect to find in an already printed book in 5 minutes?
Answer: I don't know, and I certainly don't want to find out.
To make sure that doesn't happen, I never read from my latest release, or any book of mine that's been published. I know I couldn't stand it if I came across a typo and could do nothing about it. In fact, I never even open my books once they're published. Call it Typophobia.
At the showcases, I read from a Work in Progress – that way if there's a typo or an awkward phrase, I can fix it on the next draft.
So, it serves me right that one day at a signing, I came across the WBT—the World's Biggest Typo in one of my books.
A woman bought "The HydrogenMurder," in hardback, from the bookseller and brought it to the table for me to sign. At least, on the outside, it looked like "The Hydrogen Murder." The cover was right, the flap copy and photo were correct.
I opened the book, ready to pen my name. But something was off. What was Simon & Schuster's logo doing on the first page? Avalon was my publisher.
I kept going, flipping pages, gasping as I went. The printer (or someone!) had put Ray Bradbury's "Fahrenheit 451" between the covers of my book. I removed the paper cover and saw that the printing on the spine was correct for "The Hydrogen Murder." In the photo, you might be able to make out the flap copy (mine) on one side, and the title page (Bradbury's) on the other.
I'm sorry to tell you that there is no resolution here—the bookseller had no idea where she'd gotten the book; no other book in her stock of Hydrogen Murders was like this one.
I've often wondered if the great Ray Bradbury ever opened one of his copies of "Fahrenheit 451" and found "The Hydrogen Murder," by Camille Minichino.
If so, it might not have fazed him—after all, he writes sci fi.
Can you top that for a typo? I'm willing to relinquish my title to the WBT for a good story.
Camille Minichino is a retired physicist turned writer.
She has 3 releases this spring: A re-issue of "The Hydrogen Murder" as an e-book; the second in the Professor Sophie Knowles Mysteries, "The Probability of Murder" (by
Ada , March 6); and the sixth in the Miniature Mysteries, "Mix-Up in Miniature" (by Margaret Grace, April 2). Madison
Soon, every aspect of her life will be a mystery series.
Find more about Camille and her books on her website: http://www.minichino.com/