Monday, March 10, 2008

Copy-Edit Hell

OMG; I just received my line edits back for Overnight Sensation, and I'm trying really hard not to freak out. I guess Harlequin is pretty swamped right now, because they sent my manuscript out to a freelance copy-editor, rather than using Laura (whom I loved working with). So the manuscript arrived in the mail today, along with a note from my editor that said, "...she was a little heavier with the pencil than I would have liked. Take a look and let me know what you think." Dude...heavy isn't the word; it looks like the Exxon Valdez had an oil spill all over the pages...just about every line on every page has something that she's changed. In some cases, the change is warranted. In many instances, however, it's a word preference that adds no value, i.e. "badly potholed road" versus "deeply potholed road." Or "clad in" versus "encased in". I want to throw up looking at it. I'm not even sure how I'll document the changes I agree with versus those I don't. I can't fit any more proofreading or editorial marks on the paper; it's chock-full!! I'll scan a few pages for you and upload them tomorrow so you can see for yourself. It's pretty ghastly.
Meanwhile, I'm trying to meet a May 15 deadline for Book #3 (was I on drugs???) which is now going to be part of a series of books, each involving a Special Ops soldier from a different branch of the military. So I'm doing Delta Force. Uh...ever try to dig up info on these guys? I found a bunch of books on how they get recruited, selected, and trained, and there are even some books that talk about their involvement in Iran and Grenada, but quite frankly I'm not all that interested in what they do covertly as operators. I can make that stuff up. I want the skinny on their personal lives. I want to know how their job impacts their personal relationships. Do they bring weapons home with them? Do they maintain "ready rooms" or "war rooms" in their homes? If I opened their closets, would I find any uniforms? If so, would they have any distinguishing insignia or rank on them? What do they tell their significant other they do for work? Do they do background checks on women they're interested in? What if she has less-than-pristine past? So...not knowing where else to turn, I signed up for a military discussion forum and asked my questions there, on a site for special ops discussions. I got a big, fat, resounding silence. So I changed tactics and asked the same question regarding your standard-issue, traditional USASOC guys and got pretty much the same response. Code of silence, not going to get any info here, Delta is an airline, blah, blah, blah. One guy even suggested my name be turned over to Intel as a possible Tango! While I understand and appreciate their lack of candor, it's been frustrating to say the least. I want to write a good story, one that at least seems plausible, but I guess I'm just going to have to make stuff up. Meanwhile, the clock is ticking...I signed up for a Reiki class at NECC next month, here in town. My heroine is a Reiki master, so am hoping that portion of my story will at least be believable! Okay, enough whining.

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