Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Editorial Musings and Reading Lists

Musings on the role of an editor

How many times have you heard an editor say, "I have to fall in love with a book," or something similar? I’ve heard that a lot, but I think there’s something more that the editors aren’t saying.

In order to acquire a book, I think that an editor not only has to love it, they also have to have a vision of what the book can become. This is why you hear so many authors talking about how great their editors are, especially at awards time.

The editor has a vision for the book and conveys that vision to the author through conversations on email, phone, and revision notes. A good editor will help the author by enhancing the original vision for their book.

There would never be a book without the author’s imagination and skill in writing the story, but an editor can change what the final book will be through questions and comments that make the author think.

An editor needs to love a book to acquire it, but they also need a vision of what it could be. Each book that’s published (or wins awards) would be a different book if the author had worked with a different editor.

What do you all think about that? True? False?

Notes from Cheryl Klein illustrator talk hopefully tomorrow.

Recent reads that I’d recommend (in A-Z order):
Araminta Spookie (books 1 & 2 ) by Angie Sage – LOVE the art & the stories are a lot of fun
Breathe by Cliff McNish – chilling, original ghost story
Confessions of a Closet Catholic by Sarah Darer Littman – great book about growing up & questioning your faith
Little Earthquakes by Jennifer Weiner - (adult book) humerous look at what it’s really like to have children
Sammy Keyes and the Runaway Elf by Wendelin Van Draanen – one of my favorites in this great series, there’s a mystery to be solved & Sammy saves the day
The Silverskin Legacy (books 1 & 2 - 3 comes out later this year) by Jo Wittemore – fantasy adventure on a cool world where everyone can do magic- each book is a separate story, but it’s more fun to start at the beginning
SOLD by Patricia McCormick – hard to read, but a story that needs to be told about girls sold into the sex trade

What I’m hoping to read next (in A-Z order):
Good Girls by Laura Ruby
Looking for Alaska by John Green
Story of a Girl by Sara Zarr
Tattoo by Jennifer Barnes

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