Friday, January 8, 2021

Busy Times

 I made my deadline and sent off WRITING A WRONG hurling through cyberspace to Carl, my editor at Severn House in London.  He is a pleasure to work with. He sends long chatty emails and fills me in on what’s going on in his life.

I had been totally focused on finishing the manuscript and the last few days spent ten hours a day at my computer.  By the end I was bleary eyed and hoping everything made sense.  Sending off a manuscript isn’t the end of dealing with it.  When I get the edit back from Carl, I will go through it again taking his notes in consideration.

I gave my self a day off to focus on the mundane things like doing laundry, paying bills and going to the grocery store.

And then it was on to the copy edit of ONE FOR THE HOOKS.  The copy edit is the last time I can really make changes to a manuscript.  I’ve had a number of different copy editors over the years and they are all different.  Until I looked at the manuscript, there was no way to tell if I had gotten. Sometime they just correct words, other times they want to move around text. Some of what they do is determined by the style the publisher wants, sometimes it is their personal taste.  And sometimes they are wrong.

When I took a glance through ONE FOR THE HOOKS, it appeared I’d lucked out.  The copy editor seemed to be sticking to what I’d been told they do.  They are suppose to look for repetition in word use, clarity, punctuation and grammar.  There haven’t been any bizarre comments like one I got from a copy editor of one of my early books.  She was concerned that Barry and Molly weren’t driving safely.  Another weird one was about animal adoptions at a pet store.  The copy editor said that pet stores sold pets.  The same copy editor told me I was wrong about what granny squares were. It was from the Writer for Hire series and from a guy who didn’t crochet and didn’t check it out but just gave his opinion.  In the beginning I didn’t know understand how much I could disregard a copy editor’s comments, but by the time I got the granny square comment I knew, thought I probably would have figured it out since it was so absurdly wrong on the copy editors part.

I haven’t looked at ONE FOR THE HOOKS for several months, so I was reading it with a fresh eye. I don’t want to jinx anything, but I a really like it.  I will have no problem making my deadline early next week.  I am looking forward to a breather, but probably not for long.  I will get the edits of WRITING A WRONG soon and then there’s the next book in the Yarn Retreat Series.  I started to write it, but all the other deadlines interfered and I had to set it aside.  Now I can’t wait to get back to it.  I know what all the regular characters are up to. I know who dies and who did it and how.  I’m already working on muffin recipes to include.  I think it is going to be a lot of fun to write.

Like most everybody I was stunned by what happened Wednesday at the Capitol, but I am also tired of having my thoughts hijacked by Trump. He may have an insatiable desire for attention, but he won’t get mine.  So, I have deliberately chosen not to write about what happened.


Sally Morrison said...

Hello Betty, I just finished reading Murder Ink and loved it. I'm a transplanted Chicagoan and I truly enjoyed seeing my home town again through your writing. The story was compelling and interesting and I loved the new character Veronica. Hope we read more of her adventures in the future. Also enjoyed the nod to crochet. Looking forward to reading your new Molly Pink book too. Thanks for sharing your talent.

Linda O. Johnston said...

Wow, you are definitely busy, Betty, and you clearly handle it well. Have fun with your edits--and your future writing, too.

Betty Hechtman said...

Sally, I'm glad you enjoyed Murder Ink. I just sent in the second book Writing a Wrong. I really liked writing about Chicago. It made me pay a lot more attention to places when I was writing the book. I had never really looked at the El tracks, but had sort of an overall impression of shadows on the street and a the noise of the trains. I didn't realize that Murder Ink had been released and now need to update my website and such.

Betty Hechtman said...

Linda, I really have no complaints. I am living the life I always wanted.