Loch Awe in spring - Photo courtesy of Neil Donald Photography






Monday, 10 November 2014

CONFESSION TIME!

Hello, my name's Linda and I'm an editsaholic. Crumbs, I never thought I'd say that....think it even. I well remember the first set of professional edits I was sent. It spoke in all sorts of strange words the most confusing of which was TRACK-CHANGES. All sorts of settings seemed to be attached to said track-changes and it was all too easy to click on the wrong one. There were whole tracts of this manuscript which now had red writing in amongst the original black. I was told when I wanted to make my own changes in this 'new' document then my new words would come out in blue. Blimey! They did! I was told if I wanted to comment in the editor's boxes down the right-hand side of the manuscript I was to do it in another colour. I chose green. The whole thing was turning into a rainbow....and also a bit of a nightmare. I thought - in total ignorance I now know - that I'd written a book, it would be checked for spelling and punctuation and that there had been no huge copyright errors, and then it would toddle off to the printers. But no. My editor didn't like this, questioned that, suggested that the other would be much better. And I didn't like it one little bit! Oh no...who was she telling me my baby wasn't quite as beautiful as I thought it was? But I knuckled down and got on with. I even learned a thing or two. So when book two came along there wasn't quite so much to do as there had been with book one. Track-changes? We were old mates, weren't we? I was beginning to see how a good editor can make a good book even better - well, that's what someone told me (not necessarily about my book, you understand - not bragging) and I chose to believe it. And now I have another edit on the go. And I'm still learning! I have the same editor I've had before and I think she's a little bit like Kevin on Strictly who's pushing Frankie every which way to get the best performance out of her, because she knows me and knows what I'm capable of. I'm being pushed. And my book is becoming the stronger for it. In the middle of all this, a friend who has a fancy to write short stories sent me something for me to give the once- over and an opinion on. I could see how it could be improved. So....ho hum, here we go ...professionalism came to the fore and I put track-changes on it and played 'editor'. So.....book three of my EMMA trilogy will be out in the very near future....edits notwithstanding. There's a January publication date being mentioned so....better get on with. It will join TO TURN FULL CIRCLE and EMMA: There's No Turning Back. And here for a bit of fun is me with Graham Norton doing my level best to persuade him to buy my books. He was, as you can see from his body language, not in the least bit interested. The strong silent type - or maybe just silent!

8 comments:

  1. I love editing. I've just finished the first draft of my NaNo novel and it's truly rubbish - I just can't wait to go at it and make it into something half decent (hopefully, at least).

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    1. Now, now, I'm sure it's not rubbish but I'd bet my last penny piece it will be the better for an edit... :) Well done you with the NaNo!

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    2. Jennifer how can you have finished the first draft by Nov 10th?? That's just showing off :). I'm so jealous.

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  2. Interesting post, Linda. It must have been worse to edit before the digital era when it was a hard copy and lots of squiggles! I'm pleased to hear the third part of your trilogy will soon be published. I look forward to it.

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    1. Yes, I did think about bringing all the carbon copy/Tippex stuff into it but it would have gone on too long. I don;t think I would have had the patience way back then.... :)

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  3. Love it Linda! Like you I've taken a while to get to grips with Track Changes. And each time I think I'm there I find there is another clever techy bit. And I do appreciate them, I do. I just wish it wasn't such a steep learning curve.

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  4. Thanks, Gill. It was slow progress today - just ten pages in a couple of hours (well, ten pages and the threading in of flashback for the new bits) but it's all heading towards the finish now. Can I keep off media networking sites to get it done by the end of the week.....of course I can! I hope!

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  5. Go on, Graham - buy it!!!
    I thought it was him and then I thought, naw, that can't be Graham Norton, what's our Linda doin' with 'im!
    But it is!
    Wicked, as kids say!
    Margaret P
    PS I love editing my work ... OK, it's not short stories, not even long stories, not serials, not novels, but articles for magazines and, as with any writing, it benefits by scrupulous editing.

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