Sunday, January 9, 2011

Maybe I Should Have Written a Poem Instead

A university English professor contacted my publicist with a request to review Bryony. My publicist hesitated because this professor has an editing background, and the manuscript is still going through the editing process.

So they made deal. My publicist would give her the most recent draft if the professor agreed to stop reading if she found more than three mistakes. You guessed it. She has stopped reading.


Copy editing is not my best talent. In fact, it's safe to say it doesn't even rank as a talent. In college, the teacher would distribute these handouts with copy mistakes for us to correct. I'd read through those assignments until I was half-blind, but it would always come back with all the ones I'd skipped circled in red ink. I seriously think I'm missing the part of the brain that sees punctuation glitches.

With Bryony, although I conscientiously fix each error, I consistently introduce new ones whenever I make a content change. It's a 525 page + manuscript. I figure by the time it's mistake-free, my grandchildren will be the ones signing copies. In the meantime, I'm practicing more patience and persistence. At some point, the only changing left will be "copy and fix." Boy, am I looking forward to that day.

"For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do--this I keep on doing." Romans 7:19.

I figured Paul wrote this while he was copyediting Romans.

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