One of many extra essential books within the Covington Mechanical Library is a cheap paperback from the Nineties. Lengthy out of print, derided and forgotten.
It’s “Constructing Traditional Vintage Furnishings with Pine” by Blair Howard. And the rationale I preserve it on our cabinets is as a result of it makes me a greater editor. At any time when I’m bleary eyed from an excessive amount of modifying. Or rechecking dimensions. Or evaluating drawings to a slicing record, I pull down this e book and easily open the entrance cowl.
And there’s the most important errata sheet ever identified within the historical past of woodworking publishing.
The errors weren’t the writer’s fault. Howard is a very nice man. Effectively-meaning. And he has a very good eye for furnishings design.
As an alternative, the errors within the e book have been the results of a breakdown within the publishing course of. I wasn’t concerned on this e book, however I watched it occur. The editors and technical illustrators who labored on this e book assumed that different folks have been doing their jobs. They usually have been all mistaken.
The result’s an errata sheet of 92 errors.
Throughout my time at F+W Publications (then F+W Media, then F+W Group), the e book grew to become often known as “The Blair Howard Mission” (after “The Blair Witch Mission” film), and we might invoke it in conferences to frighten different editors and supervisors. (“For those who hearth one other editor, we’re going to have an actual Blair Howard Mission on our fingers…..”)
Personally, the e book remodeled me right into a holy terror with a pink pen. For a few years I edited below the flag of the Russian proverb “Doveryai, no proveryai” (Доверяй, но проверяй). Belief, however confirm. After watching this e book unfold and disintegrate, I simply assume every part in a e book, development drawing or slicing record is mistaken. After which I’ve to show to myself it’s not.
Errors nonetheless get via our course of as a result of people are fallible.
However Blair Howard helps preserve me trustworthy.
— Christopher Schwarz
P.S. Possibly sometime we’ll go to the Unintentional Fiction part of the Covington Mechanical Library. Right here’s one e book in that assortment. There are others.