Monday, 27 August 2012

The 3 Things That Make My Head Buzz Today

Blog-time again. Lots to say, little time as usual.

First, editing novels is a joy but it can also be a very long, dark tunnel from which I wonder if I’ll ever emerge. That’s not to do with the style of the writing (well, OK, a bit) but with the immersion that’s required to make a cracking job of it. Wrinkly finger-ends are the least of it. Frazzled brain is what concerns me; it’s very important when editing to keep fresh, and this means having breaks between passes. (That’s right, you don’t edit in just one go; you have at least two edits of the full thing and sometimes, depending on the density and complexity of the work, rather more.) And that means the tunnel seems to get longer and the light at the end never grows larger than a pinprick. Oh well. I’m still enjoying it and I’m more satisfied than ever that my current author is going to get a very good job. That’s what it’s about.

Second, reviewing unpublished writing is also a joy – especially when it’s good. When the novel’s not so good, and you suspect that the writer has never read a novel themselves, let alone attended a writing course or seminar, it can be torture. We get very few like that at Fiction Feedback for which I’m eternally grateful. So many of our authors write books that, with a little help, deserve publication.

Which brings me to item three. We are looking at an association with a new ebook publishing company that launches next year. They’re adopting a new style of business, yet they are traditional publishers in the sense that authors pay nothing for editing, marketing, production and distribution, and are rewarded with royalties. A high percentage, too. So there might, there, be some good news for our authors, especially in the genre of crime which will be their main focus. And in which, coincidentally, we get most submissions.

Back to editing for me. Enjoy the Bank Holiday: if the weather is as lousy where you are as it is here – I can’t see through the window pane, the rain drops have formed one amorphous splatter – then maybe a good book calls.

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