Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Editing Myopia

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
I just finished going over the galleys for Revenge of the Cheerleaders. Reading galleys is like sending a child off to college. You just hope you did a good job somewhere along the line and put in enough time, effort, and love, because at this point it’s too late to change anything but some random punctuation. Now it’s time for my baby to go out into the cold, cruel world where people will see all of the blemishes I was blind to.

Part of the problem of reading a manuscript for, like the twelfth time, is that I don’t see mistakes. Actually I don’t even see words. This is because I know what the thing is supposed to say, and that’s what I see. If I meant to write ‘lately’ and instead I wrote ‘likely’ (which for some odd reason I did) my brain just glosses over the sentence, seeing what should be there.

I’m sure this drives my editor crazy, along with other little quirks about me, such as the fact that I think spelling should be optional. I mean, really, I refuse to take spelling seriously until it starts making sense. For example, I don’t think we should let the letters ‘P’ and ‘H’ make an ‘F’ sound. It isn’t right. The ‘P’ and ‘H’ already have jobs and shouldn’t be allowed to co-op another sound. This is the equivalent of the Maytag repairman and the landscaping guy deciding to do your dental work. I just don’t think so.

And silent letters? Bah! All they do is loaf around getting in the way and making it so third graders will never be able to spell the word knowledge. Don’t even get me started on French words. I mean, what are those people thinking? Did their dictionary makers get paid by the letter? Were they trying to hoist some cruel joke on the public? I have never in my life been able to spell the word rendezvous or hors d'oeuvres right on the first try. I just throw in some v’s, z’s and a bunch of vowels and hope spell-check can sort it out.

Yeah, this is what I become after days of editing.

6 comments:

CandyMountainFillMeWithSweetSugaryGoodness said...

I totally understand.Well...kinda. I can spell really good in real life and I usually get it right on the first try *knock on wood*. However I am taking French and some of those words are just downright confusing!!!!How am I supposed to know how to spell nouvelle and nouveaux and nouveau. Most of them sound the same!!!!

Julie Wright said...

Ack! Editing! I hate editing. May the Gods of Ink and Paper smile upon you this day that your eyes may see the commas that should be periods and the places where you have a backwards quote mark.

kaykay said...

Very true

Josi said...

I don't care so much about all that editing stuff, you won't offend my sensibilities if you miss a comma and proper spelling--but my eleven year old just clapped and jumped up and down to see another book coming out. She's just finishing up "All's Fair in Love and High-School" and she's ready for another one.Keep em crankin

Little Willow said...

Breathe, breathe!

Looking forward to your forthcoming books. :)

Janette Rallison said...

Isn't it crazy how you write a book and it doesn't actually come out for another year? Ex-boyfriend still hasn't hit the shelves and by the time it does I won't remember who the characters are any more . . .