[bksvol-discuss] Re: Apostrophes

  • From: "Amy Goldring Tajalli" <agoldringtajalli@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <bksvol-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 3 Sep 2007 14:48:22 -0400

That is the same kind of rule that is used with parenthesis.  If you have one 
set you use ( . . .). If you have a set within a set it is ( . . .[. . .] ).  
Rarely should there be more and only with an unusually  bad writer.  By 
themselves, the only thing someone other than the books author should use would 
be square brackets [ . . . ] and only to insert the scanner's note or comment 
and as rarely as possible unless there are repeat problems resolved by such 
notes, such as when a picture or drawing does not scan and you need to tell the 
reading what is not there.  I notice many books just omit the whole thing so 
the Bookshare reader does not know that something is missing unless it is to 
wonder why that page is shorter than most or if the scan included the caption 
of the picture but no picture and no explanation. I opt for letting the blind 
and visually handicapped reader have as much of the book as is possible rather 
than ignoring pictures or other elements that cannot be scanned as though they 
were not there. That to me is like lying by omission.  

The other place one finds square brackets, and they should be used sparingly is 
to let the reader know that what looks like the scanner's error or a 
misspelling on the scanner's part is not and that is indicated by: [sic ] to 
indicate that what is there on the page is correct. This may refer to a word, a 
name or a date that is wrong. You would not want to use it for something much 
longer.  In most books it is easier for the reader to know immediately  than to 
use an informative footnote which makes the reader have to seek it at the 
bottom of the page. 

All in all the best rule of thumb is to stay with what the original author has 


----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Linda Adams 
  To: bksvol-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
  Sent: Monday, September 03, 2007 1:05 PM
  Subject: [bksvol-discuss] Apostrophes

  I recently submitted a book that had both apostrophes and regular quotation 
marks.  This book was full of first-person accounts (I did this or that, I 
said, she said, etc.).  The regular quotation marks were used to denote the 
person relating his or her experiences to the interviewer.  When the person 
mentioned within the conversation that he or she said . . ., those were set off 
by single quotes or apostrophes.  

  I hope this helps.  

  Linda Adams

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