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Jim Cox Report: July 2015

Dear Publisher Folk, Friends & Family:

One of the most common flaws to be found in books that are self-published is the presence of typos -- usually in the form of unintentionally misspelled words.

Proofreading is defined as the reading of a galley or an electronic copy of a publication to detect and correct production errors of text or art. Proofreaders are expected to be consistently accurate by default because they occupy the last stage of typographic production before publication.

To prevent typos from preventing an adverse reaction to a book by readers (and book reviewers!), every self-published book needs to be proofread. If you haven't got a production budget that will allow for the hire of a professional proofreader, then you need to learn how to do it yourself. Fortunately it's not that hard.

Here are five exceptionally practical, do-it-yourself tips from 'The Proofreading Experts'

Don't Take Headers for Granted/Read Them Again...and Then One More Time: People often assume headers are correct and speed right past them to get to where they think typos are hiding. Sometimes they're in plain sight...and large.

Read Every Letter: Because of language familiarity, we have a tendency to read what we expect to see instead of what's actually there. If you force yourself to look at every letter, you will avoid this risky habit.

Read the Copy Backwards Once: Obviously, context is important, but this different perspective keeps you from getting lost in the narrative of the subject matter and missing a typo.

Double-check Then, Than and That: The wrong choice between then and than and a that meant to be a than are among the most common mistakes we see, and of course, your spell-check program is no help.

For more information on the subject I would refer you to The Proofreading Experts' web site at:

Now on to reviews of new and recommended additions to author and publisher instructional reference collections:

The Writing/Publishing Shelf

A Writer's Guide To Persistence
Jordan Rosenfeld
Writer's Digest Press
F+W Media
1140 Broadway, 14th Floor, New York, NY 10001
9781599638843, $16.99, 234pp,

Persistence is defined as the quality that allows someone to continue doing something or trying to do something even though it is difficult or opposed by other people, as well as the state of occurring or existing beyond the usual, expected, or normal time. For writers it means know matter how inconvenient or uninclined they may be to sit down and start writing, they compel themselves to do so if that article or poem or novel is to ever see print. But like so much else in the art and craft of writing, there is no need to reinvent the wheel. Not when you have access to Jordan Rosenfeld's "A Writer's Guide To Persistence: How to Create a Lasting and Productive Writing Practice". This 234 page instruction guide reveals practical ways to balance writing with the rest of your life: taming your busy schedule, increasing your productivity, and committing to a writing practice; provides sound advice for developing authentic work: finding your voice, writing bravely, and breaking the blocks to creative flow; explains methods for stretching your skills through craft and revision; and offers salient thoughts on pushing through rejection and doubt, submitting strong, nourishing yourself to avoid burnout, and keeping your mind and body fit. Especially for the aspiring writer seeking to establish their themselves as professionals and eventual achieve publication and a readership for their work, "A Writer's Guide To Persistence" will prove an invaluable and essential addition to their personal reference collections and reading lists. It should be noted that "A Writer's Guide To Persistence" is also available in a Kindle edition ($9.99).

The Joy of Writing a Great Cookbook
Kimberly Yorio
Page Street Publishing
27 Congress Street, Suite 103, Salem, MA 01970
9781624140600 $21.99

The Joy of Writing a Great Cookbook: How to Share Your Passion for Cooking from Idea to Published Book to Marketing it Like a Bestseller comes from an author who has some 20 years in publicity to her name, who has worked on the book campaigns of some of the biggest names in cooking, from Julia Child to Ina Garten - so her how-to guide isn't just about how to write a cookbook; it's about how to create a superior, marketable product. Chapters incorporate this publicist's viewpoint with the mechanics of how to publish a cookbook, offering a step-by-step focus on what cookbook options are, how to choose between the, how to select and feature recipes, and how to craft a winning book proposal that will have publishers salivating. Any who aspire to write a cookbook must have this advice-filled guide.

Readers Writing
Elizabeth Hale
Stenhouse Publishers
480 Congress Street, Portland, ME 04101-3451
9781571108432 $21.00

Students often don't write original works: they summarize - and there's a big difference between a summary and original thinking. Readers Writing outlines this difference, explores the literary and writing process involved in using a reader's notebook more effectively, and provides lessons to teachers and students that discuss the process of questioning, answers, and building upon skills using the processes and strategies in a reader's notebook scenario. The result is a guide packed with keys to drawing important connections between readers and writers and unlocking the process of success.

Here is "The Midwest Book Review Postage Stamp Hall Of Fame & Appreciation" roster of well-wishers and supporters. These are the generous folk who decided to say 'thank you' and 'support the cause' that is the Midwest Book Review by donating postage stamps this past month:

Bill Barbat
Lisa Brunette
S. Hetherington
Rebecca Murdock
Elena Marcus Negoita
Rootie Simms -- "My Childhood Christmas"
Stephen Whitfield -- "Omari And The People"
American Mental Health Foundation
Mary Linn -- Daccord Press
Leila Monaghan -- Elm Books
Walt Shiel -- Jacobsville Books
Betty Leaver -- MSI Press, LLC
Aaron Barnhart -- Quindaro Press
Amy Alspach -- Little Devil Books
Weston Blelock -- Woodstock Arts
Jan Eby -- Tell-A-Gram Publishing
Dawn Reshen-Doty -- For Beginners
Debra Pratt -- Harbor House Law Press
Vincent M. Driano -- American Invades
Richard L. Baldwin -- Buttonwood Press
Kira Henschel -- Henschel Haus Publishing
James S. Martinez -- Helping Tales Publishers
Brooks Olbrys -- Children's Success Unlimited
Yvette Robertson -- Caballito Children's Books
John R. Guevin -- Biography Publishing Company
Lindy Litrides -- Litrides & Associates
Beth Blenz-Clucas -- Sugar Mountain PR
Elizabeth Waldman Frazier -- Waldmania!
Barbara C. Wall -- The Barrett Company Communications

In lieu of (or in addition to!) postage stamp donations, we also accept PayPal gifts of support to our postage stamp fund for what we try to accomplish in behalf of the small press community. Simply log onto your PayPal account and direct your kindness (in any amount and at your discretion) to the Midwest Book Review at:

SupportMBR [at]

(The @ is replaced by "[at]" in the above email address, in an attempt to avoid email-harvesting spambots.)

If you have postage stamps to donate, or if you have a book you'd like considered for review, then send those postage stamps (always appreciated, never required), or a published copy of that book (no galleys, uncorrected proofs, or Advance Reading Copies), accompanied by a cover letter and some form of publicity release to my attention at the address below.

All of the previous issues of the "Jim Cox Report" are archived on the Midwest Book Review website at If you'd like to receive the "Jim Cox Report" directly (and for free), just send me an email asking to be signed up for it.

So until next time -- goodbye, good luck, and good reading!

Jim Cox
Midwest Book Review
278 Orchard Drive, Oregon, WI, 53575

James A. Cox
Midwest Book Review
278 Orchard Drive
Oregon, WI 53575-1129
phone: 1-608-835-7937

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