Monday 17 March 2014

Editing/Proofing Mood Swings

Note: this is written a few days ago (week), in an attempt to show you some of the feeling I feel when going through these types of things.

I love editing, I know it probably makes me weird, but I love all the forms of it, but that isn’t to say that I take it with sunshine and rainbows. No, it’s horrible, and most of the time you just wanna get up and walk the fuck away because…just fucking because!

Right at this moment, I’m in proofing edits. I’m not sure if this is a luxury only I have, because I’m really not good (or I wasn’t, I’m hoping book 5 will show improvement). The first book, I would think, nearly broke the poor proof editor because she did it like probably how she does everyone else only to find I’m shit, and there was more problems than she had time to fix.
This isn’t happening again, the second book, which stood waiting, got given back to me two weeks before it came out, giving us all time to teach me what I need to know for the future and so that she could have more than one run at the bitch—she wasn’t missing anything this time.

Okay, so that’s my own thoughts, who knows what the editor's really thinking.

This time things came a little slower, with me having thoughts that held no sunshine—I wasn’t in the mood, my thoughts where that I mustn’t have helped at all with the last one, because there just not bothering.
Apparently, it just happened that book 3 isn’t anywhere near as bad as 2.

So first emotion (yeah I felt it needed backstory) was a little chuckle, at myself and at them because she made a point of saying that it was later than the last because of this, and that. She apologies for the fact that she didn’t have to contact me earlier.
See, chuckle, smile.

And then I left it the fuck alone.

The thing is, even though I love editing of all types they still piss me off. They still frustrate me and they get me all worked up, most of the time I’ll do them with an alcoholic drink, or, just when there’s no one to yell at.
I still look at a line sand think…”how are you seeing something different to me?”
“How does that not make sense?”
And just shakes of head at the difference in what I say and what’s said on the other side of the world.

Now, I get frustrated and angry, but I will always listen and take advice from those who edit my work. What do I know I just wrote it?

This mind set has probably helped by the fact that I have dyslexia and I’ve never been able to hide the fact that in this world, in words and sentences, I’m dumb as shit, and yet I want to learn. I want to learn things that I’ve never been able to pick up before, because I had too many defence shields set up, and I simply wasn’t willing to listen.
Some were not taught to me, because they just didn’t need to be.  Not in high school.

Now, when I get my copy back, I always go right to the very bottom and see how many comments there are. I like the ballpark of these things, and then I have a moment that I have to take a breath, and let it out, telling myself that it could be worse, that 36 is actually a good number of comments—hell, you know most of them aren’t even going to have you do anything, just notes, to…take note of.

And then I start at the bottom. I always start there, going up, having a skim at what there is, fix the easy fixes, the ones that have been noted, and you look, ‘yeah, that is right’ or, ‘wow, how did I miss that stuff up’, which is something that is easily answered, even though you never actually asked the question.
It’s their job to see that stuff; it’s why they’re there.

So, when I get to the top I usually have a break. This is one of those things that you should, and shouldn’t do, because your head is about to explode and that’s only from the little things that didn’t’ even need you to break a sweat on. the next step are the ones that will need full reading and you to actually think, which you can’t really do in this insane place your stopping at. But the highlight is needed, but, you can’t stop. At least I can’t.

The thing is you’ll want to because it’s horrible. It’s looking at your work after a long break (for me) and seeing it in a light you don’t really wanna see it at. It’s looking over a book you’re sick of the sight of and knowing you’ll have to look at it again and again.
It’s annoying, and it’s easy and it’s complicated and it’s nothing any of us what to do, and yet at the end of it all you know is they aren’t being mean. They aren’t singling you out, they are just telling you what’s needed so that when people read it they have one less thing to bitch about.

Trust me; you’ll much rather a story getting back reviews, or small star number because of the work you’ve put out, the contents. Because you can take a breath at that and see what they are saying is right (you just need to get out of that snarky voice you’ve given them), but when it’s about editing they seem to target you personally, and that’s never nice.
And I’m not attacking anyone here. I have no problem with what anyone who has reviewed my books has to say, they are all correct and more so entitled to their own opinion, I’m just saying, when you see that lower star you have this voice in your head that turns what they are saying into criticism that might not be there, or more so, just shouldn’t because you can learn from every review you get, even the good ones.

Anyway, you have to get back in there, I try my hardest to finish a editing in one day/night, but sometimes that just isn’t possible, for me at least, I need some outside help, because I can’t honestly think of how I’m meant to fix something. Or what it is I was trying to say without using Aussie slang that just isn’t translatable.

it's about finding a word that's missing and putting it in. it's about re-wording a sentence that seems perfect to you, but having to try and figure out a new way to say it. which is really difficult in lots of ways, but manageable, it's just hard not to add more words than you already have.
but it's done now, I finished, and like I said, with this one, we were on the final stretch, just had the idea of writing this out while I was actually editing, seeing as the emotions and thoughts were, well, right there.

P.S. I’m sorry if this didn’t make sense, it was writing on one of my ‘breaks’

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