Editing, round one

Waiting for the first round of edits of Supermassive felt like waiting for the results of an exam. Kind of a good exam since the publisher had already accepted the manuscript, and the contract was signed, right – but kind of frightening still. What if the edit only showed what a mess my book was? Oh no. I felt like a student again (which served me right, perhaps, being so used to commenting on student essays, and expecting them to take my remarks in their stride).

As it turned out, the revised edition wasn’t so bad. There were surprisingly few plot holes (such as a person showing up where he wasn’t supposed to be). Language-wise, I quickly learned that my commas are all over the place (new mantra: I must remember the Oxford comma), that I worship forbidden run-on sentences (another new mantra: comma splice), and that I have an unhealthy appetite for hyphens. Merriam-Webster is now  my Bible, and I think I will familiarize myself with the Chicago Manual of Style for my upcoming projects.

The highlight of going through the revisions came when, deep into the edit, my editor added a comment bubble telling me that I had made her cry. Not because of poor language or terrible content, mind you. No, thankfully, it was a scene that was so emotional it tore her up. Awww, that was so sweet and encouraging! There had been funny and cheering remarks earlier, too, but this one really made my day.


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