Monthly Archives: September 2013

Copy-editing, etc, on an iPad

One of the pleasures of being freelance is that I can use any technology I like get get my books from ‘manuscript’ to ‘files to the printer’. Just recently I realised that I had been spending far too much time than was good for me or my back sitting in front of my desktop computer or at a desk reading and editing proofs.

So I’ve switched to doing most of my editing on the iPad using PDFs. I still print books out once, towards the end of the process, if they’re destined for print, but otherwise it’s an iPad and desktop relay all the way.

However I was getting a bit frustrated with trying to accurately write or mark with my right hand – when I’m left-handed. Do most left-handed people use touch screens and computer mice with their right hand? Dunno – but I do. So I bought myself this handy stylus/pen thingy which I can use with my left hand. It looks a bit like a crayon, yes. But it’s made of aluminium, so it handles like a pen. And being left-handed I can still do all the other pinchy zoomy swipey things I’m used to doing with my right hand. Result!

Hurrah! Now all I need is a way to actually edit InDesign files on the iPad…

iPad stylus

Stylus – yes it looks a bit like a crayon.

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Tales from the Ballet

Selected and adapted by Louis Untermeyer.
With wonderful illustrations by Alice and Martin Provensen. Published in 1969 by the Hamlyn Publishing Group.

The title page illustration is your ticket to the ballet. The contents page is the Children’s Matinée Programme. The introduction to ballet is The Overture. It covers twenty ballets ranging from classics like Swan Lake to Fancy Free and Billy the Kid. There are production notes at the end for readers who want to know more.

Tales from the Ballet cover

Cover: Tales from the Ballet

Waiting in the wings

The dancers waiting in the wings

Swan Lake

Swan Lake

The Firebird

The Firebird

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Book of the British Countryside

On the same day that I found the Catweazle Annual I found this.

Book of the British Countryside spine

Book of the British Countryside spine

Published in 1973 by Drive Publications Limited for the AA. I don’t know if it originally had a jacket with flaps or if this was intentional – but there is no title on the front cover. It has a ribbon marker – now broken away from the spine. The book has got damp at some point – but it might just be where it’s been sitting in the outside racks at the bookshop.

Book of the British Countryside cover

Book of the British Countryside cover

And it’s 536 pages of interestingness. While, obviously, some of it is out of date – red kites are no longer rare, and we know boxing hares are males and females now, etc, etc – it’s an incredibly useful resource and very interesting to dip in and out of. (It’s also interesting to see what has changed in the past – oh, my goodness – forty years!)

Book of the British Countryside inside

Balsam to barn

It’s arranged alphabetically, beginning with Abbey and ending with Zander – with some supplementary material on the making of the British Isles, glossary ‘nouns of congregation’ etc.

Book of the British Countryside inside

Stoats to stocks

Book of the British Countryside inside

Sherds and shrikes

Sometimes an entry is expanded into an illustrated spread:

Book of the British Countryside inside

Man-made forests

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Catweazle Annual 1972

Found in David’s Bookshop, Letchworth Garden City for 80p.


cover image

Catweazle was a children’s  TV series that ran for two series in the early 1970s. This is a 1972 annual published by World Distributors, Manchester.  As is often the way with annuals, there are no images from the TV series in the book. It’s in good nick, except that the pages are starting to come unglued. There are no on-the-page activities or colouring pages, so it’s not been defaced as many old annuals are.

The first spread is the story of how Catweazle ended up in the 20th Century. Love the heading font – so of its time.


The story of Catweazle

This is a three-page feature on palmistry.


A feature on palmistry

A did-you-know feature. I notice the one about pirates not walking the plank was around then. We’re still using that as a did-you-know in books we produce today – funny how it persists…


Puzzle and Did you know pages

Catweazle called electricity ‘electrickery’.

Catweazleannual72 inside pages

Story entitled Electrickery at the fair.

Another trivia page.

Catweazle annual 72

A clowder of cats feature

If you want to know more about Catweazle there is a UK fan site here

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