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I sold my book, Wanted:  Dead or In Love to Merit Press Books back in April. WOO-HOO! I received the first pass editorial letter in July. WOO-huh? Not so fast, sister.

My first round editorial letter arrived about 9 weeks after my agent sold the book. My editor, Jacquelyn Mitchard (I know! She's famous and fabulous!), gave me lots of lovely compliments to start off the letter. Things like: "It's exciting...and it's dark and it's just almost feasible in a magical realism way." AND..."When she talks in her head to the outlaws, it's bewitching."

Words to warm my heart. I beamed, my eyelashes fluttered with pride, I couldn't stop smiling....

....Until I read the rest of the letter. Yeah, not so heartwarming. Fix this, make that clearer, eliminate the info dump...you get the idea.

The thing is, after I was done (took me a little over two weeks working on it non-stop), I felt better. The things she spotted did need pruning and now my manuscript reads better, feels more authentic, and doesn't have a large SPLAT! of information somewhere in the center (something that my intelligent readers would NOT have needed anyway!).

In other words, she cleaned out my novel's attic and got rid of my junk––the feeble bits of unneeded garbage I'd shoved into the manuscript and had hoped no one would notice was there. Luckily, Jackie noticed and demanded (I imagine her pointing to the recycle bin with one hand, while pinching her nose closed with the other) that I get rid of the old useless junk I'd been holding onto. So I hoisted the dull, dusty verbiage over my shoulder and dumped it in my laptop trash bin. (Crinkle, crinkle...love the sound of emptying the trash).

Now that the attic has been cleaned, I sit and wait for round two, wondering what she'll find in my closet. Eeek...

'Til next time,
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( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 31st, 2013 03:34 pm (UTC)
revision letters from editors
I always say it takes a day to peel me off the ceiling when I get a revision letter from an editor. But afterwards, I break it down into a numbered "to do" list. Then dig in and get to work. Sounds like you handled this one like the pro that you are. Love the smelly trash analogy. Can't wait to buy and read your book!
Jul. 31st, 2013 03:56 pm (UTC)
Re: revision letters from editors
Thanks! I too, broke it down into the five major fixes I needed to accomplish, fixing one problem at a time throughout the whole manuscript before going back to the beginning and tackling the next. Hope your ceiling is nicely padded for the future. ;)
Jul. 31st, 2013 06:54 pm (UTC)
Yeah for you....when do WE go on tour?
Jul. 31st, 2013 07:16 pm (UTC)
I'll go anywhere with you, Anonymous. :) Seriously, I'm up for any adventure....
Jul. 31st, 2013 10:37 pm (UTC)
Such great imagery and it sounds like Jacquelyn Mitchard is a gem. Oh the joys of publishing! I know it's worth it but, wowzer, it's hard work :D
Jul. 31st, 2013 11:09 pm (UTC)
Thanks! And yes, she's funny and very approachable. Not thrilled about the actual "attic cleaning" process (I hate housework), but once it's done, it sure feels nice.
Aug. 1st, 2013 12:49 am (UTC)
Revision letters....
Oh, Lord, this makes me dread getting mine....

Aug. 1st, 2013 02:18 pm (UTC)
Re: Revision letters....
Deep breath...get out cleaning supplies. :)
Aug. 1st, 2013 08:28 pm (UTC)
Congrats Kymmers!
Congrats Kymmers! I know I've congratulated you before, but there's always more room for continued celebration! Writing is tough the first time around and revisions can be even tougher! But sometimes it can be the fun part. Depends on how you look at it. There's a silver lining somewhere! So glad your manuscript received the attention it deserves! Cannot wait to hold your book in my hands and tell everyone I know that I personally know the author! :)
Aug. 1st, 2013 08:38 pm (UTC)
Re: Congrats Kymmers!
You're a huge part of my success, Katie. I TREASURE your, and all my crit buddies', advice! And of course, since you've also become my friend, it's a million times better to share my accomplishment with! *And I cannot WAIT until it's my turn to congratulate you. HUGS!!
Aug. 1st, 2013 08:59 pm (UTC)
It's such a great feeling to get past the first round of edits. And I love the analogy "clean out the attic". =)
Aug. 1st, 2013 09:25 pm (UTC)
Truthfully, I think I'll feel slightly more relaxed when the ARC is in my hand and ready to be born. (But maybe not...you'll have to let me know about THAT!) :)
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )