If you have done laundry then you know the mystery of lost socks. It is always one, not two, that disappear and where it goes and how it goes remains a mystery. Either the washer or the dryer is the culprit and neither will rat out the other. However, after careful examination over the years of the two suspects, I suspect the washer is guilty of trafficking in human socks. I can’t give details as it is an ongoing investigation.
It has been brought to my attention, much to my dismay, that like lost socks, there is a mystery surrounding lost quotation marks. Rest assured neither the washer or dryer are suspects in the case.
The facts are these. A certain writer, namely me, in either the process of writing a story in Word doc. or in transferring said story to an unnamed formatter-unnamed until formal charges can be brought-has seen numerous missing quotation marks, most disappearing at the end of a quote, though a few are missing at the beginning, even rarer, both are missing. You can imagine the problems that causes.
I know what you are thinking. That during the course of editing and proofreading there is bound to be a few missing quotation marks, or periods, misspellings, other punctuation miscues and so on. It is true that the writer in question, namely me, during a fervor of creativity, where words are flowing into sentences, the sentences rapidly building paragraphs, the paragraphs quickly filling pages, that more errors are likely to occur. But such a hot streak of creativity for the writer in question, namely me, is as rare as two lost socks.
More to the point is when missing quotation marks number well over 100 in a novel, it is clear a crime is being committed. In fact I took a lie detector test in which I stated that yes I had done a proofreading, had in fact did numerous checks. It did appear they were there in Word. doc-at least that is my believe, but the evidence is now missing. The fact that I administered my own lie detector test should not be held against me.
Clearly something is going on. And I am about to set a trap. I have a new collection of short stories, “Cemetery Tales and other Phantasms” that I have proofread in Word.doc and all quotation marks are accounted for. Now the manuscript has been uploaded to a formatter and I am soon to check it. I hope to be done soon, as the e-book needs to be published for Halloween. I will report my findings next week. Stay tuned.