I can understand how in past times people explained things by their belief in mythological creatures such as fairies and goblins and sprites; when something inexplicable happens it is less worrying or frightening to have an answer even if it does involve a supernatural being of some sort. I am sure we have a boggart in our house, a well-meaning thing who makes more of a mess by trying to tidy, and who puts things such as keys away in unexpected places – often the place we have just been looking in, and who thinks sprinkling crumbs on work surfaces, tea leaves in the sink and random bits of fluff on the carpets is helpful in some way.
As I go through and recheck my next novel, Lucky Portbraddon, for the very last time before it is published on Monday as an e-book on Kindle, I am sure there is a grammar gremlin and a punctuation pixie who are creeping through the words behind me as I check them – I’m sure they change tenses, add inappropriate ‘s’s to words to make singulars plural, or kidnap the poor innocent ‘s’ in a genuine plural; they insert or extract commas, change semi-colons to colons, change ‘its’ to ‘it’s’ and vice-versa. There is also a spelling sprite, who despite my own best efforts and that of spell-check, ‘i’s and ‘e’s are reversed so sieve becomes seive, believe becomes beleive, and double consonants are rendered single. There is also some lurking unidentified presence who changes characters names, Sam becomes his brother Adam, Sylvia becomes Sonia, for example, and a completely new character Tom seems to appear from time to time who has nothing to do with the story, and may have escaped from a completely different book!
I do the best I possibly can, and I am really grateful to readers who point our any errors which have slipped through despite my constant checks. If you are kind enough to read ‘Lucky Portbraddon’, or any of my other novels, please do let me know if you find evidence of the gremlins, sprites, pixies or changelings!
Here is a link to my novels, Lucky Portbraddon will be here on Monday, 12th September: