Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Trust your Gut

Rosalie's post yesterday inadvertently became the basis of mine.  Hope you don't mine, Rosalie. *grin*

It is always good to listen to an editor when it comes to your manuscript. If you're fortunate enough to be accepted by a knowledgeable editor who loves your voice, you can't ask for anything more. A fantastic editor can make a story shine. They can offer suggestions to make the story stronger, more powerful, and something readers will enjoy. However, there is also something I find equally important when it comes to your work: trust your gut.

Lets say that you've been offered a contract with one of your dream publishers. You're excited beyond belief -- until you see the revisions necessary to resubmit the material.  Now, I think it's a natural reaction to wonder what was wrong with your story in the first place. No one likes to be told their work is "good" but not "great."  My suggestion? Sit on it. Put that email away for two, three, even four days and then come back to it. If you're still as adamant about the changes, then perhaps it's best to take the story elsewhere. However, if you're at all uncertain then the chances are your editor was onto something.

A good rule of thumb regarding revisions is to come at them "professionally" but not "angry".  When you're angry, it suggests you're being defensive. If you're being defensive, you can't possibly be objective. It's a known fact that many authors detest edits; they take a lot of time, often call for several rounds of work, and can sometimes alter the story. However, becoming perturbed by the correction of grammatical errors, simultaneous actions, or a failure to follow a publisher's house style won't do you any favors. Not to mention it won't make you a better writer. With each book we write and submit, we also learn, which is a good thing. It's all about finding and maintaining a balance.

Have a happy hump day. Since my day of the week is the best one, I've decided to work some eye candy into my post.  Certainly it's not writing related, but a little chocolate from time to time won't ruin the diet. ;-)


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