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Thursday, May 17, 2007


Dodged Another Error

Some times I will get a book from a publisher or a book proposal from an author. Because I’m looking at their product or manuscript or proposal for the first time, I see something they have completely missed like a typographical error.

People wonder how in the world someone could let something so basic slip out of their hands into the world for others to see. It happens fairly often. My encouragement with this post is for you to check something then check it again before sending it out.

Yesterday I dodged another error for my own product and I wanted to use my own story to illustrate this point.

For the last several months, I've been developing my first audio CD product teaching about a topic which I am passionate about--book proposals. With the first product, it was two CDs or an hour of teaching combined with a bonus CD. I've been receiving proto-types of the product and testing it. In the first attempt, the files on the CD had not been converted. They played on the computer but not in a regular CD player. The goal is for the product to be as flexible as possible and play in both areas. The second version of the product arrived recently and it worked great in my regular CD player. When I ran the product by a mentor, he told me that I needed more value or content for the product. I returned to my wealth of teaching files and added a third CD to the product. Now it is over three hours of teaching about book proposals and a tremendous value for anyone who wants to gain my insight into the publishing process.

Because my product changed from a two CD package into a three CD package, I had to look at another proto-type of the product. I tested all three CDs and they ran perfectly in the computer and in the regular CD player. I checked the copy on the package and everything looked great. Earlier this week, I gave the OK to go into production and I’ve been making plans to launch this product next week.

As I've been writing the materials to launch this product, for inspiration, I've had this three CD package on my desk. Then yesterday afternoon, I re-read the spine of the product. Beneath the title, it says, "Presented by W. Tery Whalin" Hopefully you spot the typo in my last sentence--a common word--especially for me.

After I saw this typo, I checked the other two proto-types. They contained the same typographical error. in this case, the product hasn't gone out to any customer and I was reassured this morning via email that it will be fixed in the production process. Whew, I dodged another error. And when someone puts this new product on their bookshelf, what do they see? The spine which contained the typographical error.

My encouragement to you today: whatever you are working on--a query letter to a magazine, a book proposal, a book manuscript, a product to launch into the marketplace--take a second, third and fourth look at it. If you don't, then you risk launching something that needed that one additional touch.

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1 Comment:

At 9:46 PM, Blogger Bonnie Calhoun Left a note...

Great post Terry...it let's us know that there is hope for us yet, and that no mistake will be your last! Just remain vigilant!

 

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