Thursday, August 6, 2009

Writter (for Writer)

"In Hollywood the woods are full of people that learned to write, but evidently can't read. If they could read their stuff, they'd stop writing," according to Will Rogers. Writter is most obviously a typo whose intended target was "Writer." It could also be a misfire of "Written." Indeed, a check of the nearly 400 writters in WorldCat this morning shows both targets. In addition, there are instances where Writter is somebody's name. It is in the B, or High Probability, section of Typographical Errors in Library Databases, meaning that it was found between 16 and 99 times in OhioLINK at the time of its discovery. It was written in red, meaning that it was just added to the list in 2009.
These updates are performed in the early months of each year by Tina Gunther from Biola University in California, whose efforts are absolutely vital to this project.

Choosing today's photo was a problem. We have so many writers in our virtual file box: Paul Theroux, E.L. Doctorow, Sherman Alexie, Armistad Maupin, and Yogi Berra to just scratch the surface. We settled for Garrison Keillor, who was signing autographs at the 2007 American Library Association meeting in Washington. The original is found at

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