Normally, I’m all about digital.Â Hitting “send” on a manuscript is a hell of a lot better than printing it out and slogging it to the post awful, hoping against hope that nothing eats it en route to NYC.Â But when it comes to copyedits, I admit, I miss the days of paper edits, post-its, and red pen STETs.
Digital queries are just, somehow, more annoying.
And of all the elements of making a book, there is nothing glamorous about a writer going through a copyedit.
You start with a fresh cup of coffee and maybe something healthy to munch on, and by the end of the first day you’re surrounded by two empty coffee mugs, a half-full mug of tea, a water glass, a wine glass, the remains of your re-heated dinner shoved to one side, and increasingly snarky retorts in the margins, feeling like someone ran over your brain with a snowplow, and wishing dreadful fates on the copyeditor* who wants you to adhere strictly to Strunk & White, even in dialogue…
And there’s still another 240 pages to go.
Rinse and repeat, tomorrow.
*not all copyeditors, obviously.Â Mine’s fine.Â But enough of the breed prize conformity and rules over creativity and voice to make conflict inevitable.