I wasn’t going to watch the Presidential debate tonight, because I’m almost at my saturation point, and I'm just getting more and more frustrated the closer we get to the election, but I can’t. look. away.
My copy edits arrived, and they are beautiful.
In a frenzy of excitement, I gathered up lots of pencils, as if I would be marking up nine zillion pages, instead of less than three hundred.
The long note in red on the right margin is from the copy editor, tactfully suggesting that I may have an addiction to italics, and should seek professional help. Mostly I wrote, “OK” in places where she removed the italics, but sometimes I wrote, “STET.” Come on, I can’t go cold turkey!
In case some of you don’t know what a copy editor does, here’s a description of the editing process in three words: BIG, smaller, micro.
It may be different at other publishers, but here's how it worked with my manuscript:
BIG: My editor sent me revision notes in a letter, with notes made on the manuscript, as well. I made changes to the manuscript on my laptop, then emailed the new version to her. (Some authors go through several revisions at the big stage.)
Smaller: My editor did not have additional big revisions for me to do, so she went to line edits, in which she suggested very line-specific changes. For example, she asked things like, “Would he really use that word?” I made the changes and emailed the new version to her.
Micro: Then the copy editor, a different person, went through the manuscript with super-keen hawk eyes, reading for consistency, punctuation, grammar, and overuse of italics. :-) I will read all her comments, make any necessary changes of my own directly on the pages of the manuscript, and snail mail the whole thing back to her.
I'm about halfway finished, and it's really fun!
I listened to the new Neil Gaiman book on my iPod last week, and I can’t stress enough the awesomeness of the experience. Not only is the book terrifically gripping, but it is read by Gaiman himself. I somehow missed that detail during the intro, and did not find out until the end when he read the credits. HE WAS AMAZING! How much talent should one man be allowed to possess?! (See that question mark and exclamation point stuck together? My copy editor doesn’t like that. I kept a couple, but mostly I relinquished my grasp on quirky punctuation.) Not only is Gaiman an unbelievable storyteller, he’s an accomplished audio actor. If you were planning to read the book anyway, do yourself a favor and get the audiobook.
I’ve been taking my laptop to work the past couple of weeks, because I can’t get enough writing done at home lately. So I scarf down lunch and spend the remainder of my lunch hour writing. If I can add 30 – 45 minutes a day to my writing, I will make progress. If I don’t meet my JoNoWriMo goals this year, I will get a visit from Jono … and I’m a little afraid of him. Not Jo! If she showed up at my door unannounced tomorrow, I would invite her in, feed her pie, and let her stay with us. (Free cable and WiFi! Come anytime, Jo!)
On the other hand, I’m already tired of Joe the Plumber.