I’m doing hard copy edits on the book that’s due today. I have two more chapters and the backmatter to go. This gizmo to the right has been my best friend.
It is my mom’s typing stand. Mom was a graduate of Miss Hickey’s Business School. She worked in accounting but, to my knowledge, she was never a secretary which is kind of sad because this is one handy-dandy stand.
I generally only do one hard copy-edit per manuscript, unless a section is giving me troubles. When that happens, I print it out, go into the dining room and work on paper. Then I come back into my office and prop the manuscript up on the stand.
I hope that all of you take the time to do a paper edit when you write something. I’ve already been through the manuscript 3 or so times on-screen. And I’ve listened to it read by Speak. I find mistakes via Speak that I don’t find on-screen. I find mistakes on paper that I didn’t hear and sure didn’t see on-screen.
Given the fact that we want to give our editors the best possible work, I would definitely recommend doing a hard copy edit. But you’re going to have to find your own typing stand. This one is mine.
I have a book due today. In an ideal world, I’d have spent yesterday working through the last of my hard copy edits. Of course, in an ideal world jr. wouldn’t have come home from school spiking a fever.
Granted, he’s a teenager so it isn’t like I need to be at his beck and call. But, you know how it is. If someone else is here, you just don’t get as much done. First he has to tell me his head hurts. He may be 17 but he’s never willing to get over-the-counter meds out without saying something to me first. Then his stomach was bugging him and that’s when we discovered the fever.
For better or worse, I tend to meet my deadlines without a whole lot of wiggle room. Of course, that’s because things like this seem to happen on a regular basis. When I was working on the Pearl Harbor book, I did hard copy edits on a clip board leaning against a wall in the emergency room while my dad slept. They finally diagnosed him with . . . I think it was pneumonia that time . . . and gave him a bed. But I edited at least two chapters with beeping and nurses bustling to and fro.
I try to have things ready to turn in the day before things are due, but that seldom seems to work out. In part, I think it is because I become much more productive and efficient as the deadline nears. What can I say? Monday, I did hard copy edits on 2 chapters and got everything changed on the computer. Yesterday, I did hard copy edits on the other 6 chapters and got 2 chapters worth changed on the computer. That means that today I have to type up the changes for four more chapters. I also have to edit and update the back matter and clean up the formating on the bibliography. It will probably take me about 3 hours.
This may not be the best method but it works for me. I think that I’ve missed one deadline in something like 20 years. Fingers crossed that as you read this, I’m attaching the file to an e-mail and sending it in!
Have you ever wondered what an editor does when they acquire an international title that must be translated? If so, Carp Tales, the newsletter of the SCBWI Tokyo region, has an interview with editor Cheryl Klein. Klein will be leading the Missouri SCBWI retreat in March.
The interview includes information on Klein’s background, how she acquired Moriboto by Nahoko Uehashi, the challenges of working in translation and more.