Nov 032011

Just finished sending the edited story back to the editors for The Anthology.  Ironically enough, I am more concerned with this one than I was with the edits on Half Past Midnight.  At least with HPM, I knew going into it that the process was going to be a lengthy one.  With The Anthology, I know the editors are under the gun, and are feeling the pressure to get all the various submissions edited, completed, and then turned in for formatting so the final book can be done.

The thing I’m really worried about though, is the fear that I may be alienating one of the editors.  It’s not intentional, but there were a few key points that this editor missed in the story, and one in particular that we simply disagree on.  I’m really not trying to be difficult, but when the editor tells you that you need to clarify something that was pointed out twice before in the story, you have to say so.  Then of course, you have the doubts circling about in your head – am I being some kind of a diva; was my explanation not clear enough?  But no matter how many times I re-read it, I come up with “there were four widgets, two got broke, two still function”.  It’s in there twice – once when the two break, and once during a conversation afterwards.  I guess I’m just too new to the writer schtuff and am concerned that the editor is going to have a thin skin, and that’s unfair of me.  We’re all trying to be professionals here.  I shouldn’t worry about them being less professional than I would be, so what am I worrying about?

The other thing is (I think) simply a stylistic difference.  I’ve had three beta readers go over the story, and gotten compliments on a particular passage.  Two of the three editors for The Anthology had no problem with it, either – or at least, they made no comment on it one way or the other.  However, this third editor indicated that it was too confusing and wanted to remove the section from the story entirely.  I’m going to have to push back on that one… diplomatically, of course, but IMHO the story looses some of its flavor with the removal of that section.  I added comments to that effect into my edited manuscript when I sent it back, and I suppose I’ll just have to wait and see what they say. 

The thing is, I have all the respect in the world for these guys.  I just think there may be a difference in styles here, and I hope it doesn’t get in the way of my story getting published.  If it does though, I have to remember that it’s their anthology, and if they ultimately decide that my writing isn’t right for it, then it’s their prerogative.

Hopefully, I’m just worrying too much about nothing.  So it’s time to stop worrying, and start back to writing.  I’ve done all I can at the moment on Half Past Midnight, and it’s undergoing its transformation from manuscript to final product at Telemachus Press.  And for today at least, The Burning Land is in the hands of the editors, so it’s also out of my hands.  Looks to me like it’s time to either concentrate on The Road to Rejas, or get back to recording the podcast version of HPM.  Guess I’ll get with R2R at lunch today, and then see what the recording environment is like at home when I get off work.  If things are quiet enough, I can (hopefully) get some recording done.  If not, I can possibly do some more writing on R2R

Ah, well.  Back to work.  Keep reading, keep writing, and keep safe.

May 022011

After some discussion with my wife, we have decided that the cost of hiring a freelance editor is a worthwhile investment in my (fingers crossed) writing career. So I have spent considerable time looking for a freelancer that would fit the bill for me.  Ironically enough, it’s beginning to look like I’ll end up going with the very first person I investigated (assuming she has time to work with me).

So far, I’ve looked into five different editors.  First was Lynn O’Dell, of Red Adept Reviews.  She comes highly recommended by one of the hosts of The Dead Robots’ Society (Terry Mixon), and on  I checked the Red Adept Review site, and found several author recommendations (which you would expect, I suppose) and used them to check on to see what kind of response they had.  All that I checked had four or five-star reviews, but only one author had enough reviewers (“Portal” by Imogen Rose had 151 reviews with a 4.5 star overall rating) to really catch my attention.  So I bought it and am reading through it to see how the editing is.

Of the other editors I investigated, two had websites that actually had either spelling or grammar errors on them (not exactly good advertisement for an editor, right?), one had stopped freelancing and was now working for a small press (Etopia Press) and so now has to take work on spec with the press, and one simply didn’t offer much other than a one time edit of your manuscript.  Anything beyond that costs extra.

Lynn O’Dell offers an initial edit, sends you back her comments, and once you incorporate (or try to incorporate) those changes into the manuscript, she will then go over it again, AND will have one of her proofreaders go over it as well, for another editing pass, sending you both her comments, and those of her proofreader.  She’s a little more expensive than the others I looked at, but offers considerably more for the price.

I’m still researching, but so far, Lynn is the only one to whom I have submitted my novel.