One of the nicest things I learned from writing Longitude is that a book can actually improve by virtue of being read. Numerous attentive readers took the trouble to write to me to point out typos or other errors in the text, which the publisher then corrected in subsequent editions. (For example, the typesetter had inexplicably swapped the word “latitude” for “longitude”—and vice versa—on several pages.)
Many more people wrote to say they'd enjoyed reading the book, and quite a few asked questions that the story had raised in their minds. Almost all of the correspondence about Longitude went back and forth by ordinary mail, and although I still answer readers' letters by hand, with a fountain pen, I see this personal web site as a way to continue and perhaps widen the dialog.