Monday, January 16, 2006

My latest Oz readings

You're going to be frustrated by this, because I've been working on two books, and I don't want to name either one, for different reasons. The book I'm reading right now is a fun little read, but it uses many characters and situations that are still under copyright. I'd rather not get the author and publisher in trouble by alerting the Baum Trust to the situation.

The other book? I'd rather not embarrass the author! The premise of the book is bad enough for some Oz fans — let's just say that there are some situations in it that some would find to be quite un-Ozzy, or at least out of character — but that doesn't really bother me much. For Pete's sake, I've read and survived Was and A Barnstormer in Oz, and even enjoyed Wicked. No, my big gripe with this book was the grammar. This is a self-published book, and it shows. There are a lot of run-on sentences and fragments and misspellings ("your" is used when "you're" should be there, and the word is "casual," not "causal," just to give two particularly glaring examples), and this guy has no idea how to use a comma. I had to go back and reread too many sentences to figure out where they should have been. More than once I nearly gave up, which would have been only the second time I gave up on an Oz book ever. So let this be a lesson to any potential Oz authors out there: Learn the basics of the English language, spelling, and punctuation — or turn your manuscript over to someone who does and let them do a brutal copy edit on it.

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