I spent this past weekend in Phoenix visiting my younger brother. I’m now a little more tan, a little more relaxed, and pretty happy that I got to watch my Atlanta Braves play the Arizona Diamondbacks.
I returned to work yesterday to find an email in my inbox that was asking about hotel rooms for a convention I’m coordinating. The thing is, my email spells out my name. However, at the beginning of the email, she spelled my name “Brittnay.”
I thought, no big deal. She just typed it wrong. However, twice more in the same email, she spelled it wrong.
There are a dozen ways to spell my first name, so while I still find it annoying, I’m pretty used to it. What annoys me is the fact that my name is spelled out in my email address. She sent it to the correct email address, so she spelled it correctly once.
Whenever I send an email that isn’t just a quick, interoffice communication, I type it up, and then I double check my facts. Call it part of my journalism training, but I always double check name spellings, dates, times, etc. As I pointed out in a previous post, in some of my classes, if you spelled a name wrong, your grade for that article dropped at least one grade point.
Call it a rant if you like, but it is always important to double check the details in anything you write. I remember when I finished writing my first novel. I waited a little while, and then went back through it to revise. I found several details throughout the novel that didn’t quite match up. They weren’t big details – nothing like misspelling a name – but those small details are just as important to the story. If something doesn’t match up, it destroys the reality you’re building in the story. Regardless of the genre, if you don’t pay attention to the details, you can’t make people believe in the story you’re telling.
You never really hear about artists having to be detail-oriented people. A lot of times you hear that they’re scatter-brained. However, as writers – whether you’re an author, or a publicist, or even just someone writing emails for conventions – you must pay attention to the details.