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Revisions [Mar. 3rd, 2010|03:16 pm]
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[Current Mood |awake]

Revision time on book two, AKA Kings of the North, has begun...the editor's letter arrived today (OK, it was email, but it's still called a letter, out of Tradition.   How fast can I get them done?  Not sure yet.  Reading the revision request with a headache and mild whiplash from yesterday's fall is not the best state of mind in which to estimate time.  Usually I'm fast.  Sometimes, not so.

Yanking my head out of the nearly-released yippee-ki-yi that is book one, AKA Oath of Fealty, and the still-not-done but very alive book three (AKA known as "book three"), to look critically at Kings is going to take an hour or so, just for that transition.   Until I got my copy of Oath,  my head was thoroughly engaged in book three, where (mmmph...it's my book I can utter spoilers if I want to...mmmmphphph...or maybe not) is happening.   Then Oath grabbed me again (yes, I remember the story.  I still have to read it.   It always reads a little differently when it's in print.)

But by tomorrow sometime, I should be nose-down on the revision track, and happy to be there.


[User Picture]From: pgranzeau
2010-03-04 02:10 am (UTC)
Curious: How long is (for you) a typical revision letter? How much work will be involved? Do you agree with the revisions (I assume, if you did not, you would be writing back)?
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2010-03-04 05:00 am (UTC)
Highly variable in length, and in the types of revisions requested (and thus how long it takes to do them, how much work is involved.) Because of the way I like to do revisions (a three-step process) I read the editor's comments very carefully (now that they come in e-form, I print them out), and then code each one with the step involved--structural/design, construction/assembly, finish. Then I do all the structural/design revisions first, starting at the beginning and working through at that level. Any structural revision is going to have repercussions that the editor doesn't, of course, talk about--that's my problem. But fixing something usually means fixing later things (and sometimes precursor things) as well. Then I do the next stage, the construction/assembly level revisions, and finally I do the finish level revisions. When it's done this way, I find that the whole then feels as if it had grown like that in the first place--it's melded with everything else.

I start with the attitude that the editor is probably right and certainly has the book's success in mind. Yes, editors can be wrong, but in my experience, they're usually right. If I disagree with an editor's requests, I think about it for 24-48 hours and discuss it with two alpha readers. If I still think it's wrong, I will ask for clarification, explaining what that part of the book was intended to do. Sometimes the editor will then agree that the goal was good, but insist that I didn't accomplish it--but instead of taking out an offending bit, I just need to make it work. Sometimes (rarely, but sometimes) I know more about something than the editor, and when I give references and reasons, editors have backed off. Occasionally, I'm stuck with something I think is a mistake (I think that's one time in 22 books, so you can see that editors aren't that wrong that often.)

The thing is, editors know books, and they want the books they shepherd through the process to do well. We are on the same team. I've had mostly outstanding editors, and I respect their expertise.
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[User Picture]From: keristor
2010-03-04 04:28 pm (UTC)
I has an 'Oath'! UK, via Amazon UK, delivered this morning.
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2010-03-04 05:06 pm (UTC)
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