Tuesday, 4 December 2012

You can quote me

I’m just signing my fourth contract. First Dark Interlude, then Ice Trekker. Last week hubby and I were proper chuffed to get a deal for Half Life, an adventure in Norway in the late 1930s. Think Fascists, fission and film noir.

Then yesterday, imagine my surprise when I received a deal for The Lost Orchid. I have a soft spot for this one – my first completed book.

Now seeing a little cross-eyed, as I’ve just been working out how to replace single quotations with double (and vice versa), without corrupting your regular, common or garden apostrophe. My checklist of ‘search and replace’ looks like some mysterious Holmesian code.

In the end, I used a system I’d devised when working at the West Australian in Perth many moons ago.

The trick is to camouflage all the actual apostrophes by converting every single apostrophe into a dollar sign to get them out of the equation. (’ll, ’d, ’r, ’s etc.)

Next, tackle the opening quotes:  replace ^p‘ with ^p“, and so on. Plus other combinations of [space]‘

Then change the closing quotations, including punctuation combos: ?’ for ?”; !’ for !”  and … ’ for … ” and so on.

Finally, do a one mass reconversion of $ back to the apostrophe, and you’re done. You can quote me.

Simples.

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