Monday, November 10, 2014

It's Not Always a Smooth Road

Since it feels like I've been posting a lot of giddy "Yay, Crow's Rest is nearly a book" posts here and on my Facebook pages, I wanted to also share a misstep on the journey. It's not a big one, but it left me feeling a little red in the face.

You see, the week before last I got something called "closing notes"--I was warned that it's not as final as it sounds, and would likely be a couple of round of edits before we went into layout. I dutifully went through and addressed all the notes and comments, just as I'd done in previous rounds of copyedits.

In some instances, things had been corrected/changed directly in the text with track changes, and some were addressed in the comments with requests for clarification on sources. So in those cases, I left a comment explaining why I wanted to keep it, or referred them to the source, or whatever issue had come up.

Then I shot the document back to my editor, and we had a few emails about what we would fix and how we would do it. But as far as I knew, I was waiting for another round, or document, to come back to me. So la la la, I dove back into drafting No Man's Land, the sequel.

Ha! I should have known things were too quiet! I then got an email from my editor about something else, wherein he mentioned, "when you make those changes. . ." and I went, "WHAAT?" Apparently, they'd been waiting for me to go in and make the changes and otherwise clean up the document.To be fair, I hadn't been explicitly told that (and I'm nothing if not a literal person), or maybe I was distracted by the request for input on the interior art.

But even though I was embarrassed that I'd unwittingly held up the process, I paid for it in other ways, too--because it meant that the time I had to work on the document was also the two days last week that the contractor came back to start fixing our tile floor. Two days of hearing the grinding of the grout and tile (even with earplugs in and my office door closed), and of clouds of dust waiting for me if I stepped out of my office.

I worked on it steadily, but at about 30% of the rate it would have normally taken me, and I even got a nudge in there from the editor, gently asking if I'd finished yet. But I did finish, and returned them on Friday, and I'm proud of myself for sticking it out under harrowing circumstances.

If anything, this experience has done more than anything previously to make me feel like a "real" writer. But then, ask me again when I'm holding an actual copy of my book, and maybe I'll have a different answer!


  1. I've heard of this happening for another writer. Sometimes the process is so clear to editors but not so clear to us debut writers!

  2. I'm just glad it was a fairly minor SNAFU, lol


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