Tuesday, 1 October 2019
Last Star Standing off to the editorial board. . .
It's a very odd thing, and never happened to me before. This is my seventh completed novel and the only one that, returning to it after a year of writing another has made me think, 'Too long. Really wants pruning.'
Maybe it's the speculative genre, I don't know. Anyway, I assumed I'd just shoot it back off to Unbound after a light read, of a sunny evening. Instead, it's been a gruelling fortnight of five-six full edits, plus one go from Simon.
The result is 98,000 lean, mean words - was 113,000 - and I feel super-happy with it.
Less happy are my editing clients, who deserve some serious action from me. (Somehow I just couldn't manage both, esp. with my daughter Rachel and her boyfriend staying.) So it's straight back to a brilliant business book and some gloriously elegant novellas set in 1950s China.
I hope my editor - whoever he or she might be - is not going to give me any grief. I am unaccustomed to being edited, except that my husband Si and I have always edit each other's books. When I was published by Orion, I was basically unedited. My publishing contact - a very senior woman - met me in London one day over the kind of lunch publishers can't afford anymore and said she wasn't thrilled with two scenes in novel #2. I went home, decided that she was right, and excised them.
And that was it. Almost no copy-editing, though some very eagle-eyed proofreading. As I'm new to Unbound, I'm secretly dreading somebody's tearing my prose to shreds, for the very first time in my life. In which case there are going to be a load of smashed tennis racquets in BR6 8JH. . .
With grateful thanks for your support,