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How could I be so stupid?

I’ve spent the past couple of days going through the copy edit of Everything Is Miscellaneous. The copy editor, Christopher O’Connell, has done an incredible job. Not only has he corrected every bad comma, transformed every errant “that” into “which” and vice versa, and capped every uncapped capitalized word, but he’s also unearthed an embarrassing number of factual and thoughtual errors that would have mortified me if they’d seen print. I am impressed with the number of ways I’ve managed to go wrong, even though I was rather careful (or so I thought) when taking notes. I misspelled names, don’t know whether 350 BCE is in the third or fourth century BCE, and am wrong about the citizenship of some important historical personages. (What, Napoleon wasn’t Irish???)

It is a usefully humbling experience for which I’m very grateful.

3 Responses to “How could I be so stupid?”

  1. Back when I was a tech writer, I decided that a good editor was the best person in the world. After all, their entire job was to make me look good. :-)

  2. Precisely – I think that the more technically-oriented we get, the more cause there is for appreciating the English majors among us. (Amongst?)

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