Posted On February 17, 2012 by Print This Post

Ten Myths About Editors – Theresa Stevens

Do you think editors have a glamorous job? Picture them reading a manuscript and sipping Veuve Clicquot on a Lear jet cruising at 40,000 feet after a day of shopping in Paris?

Theresa Stevens (quite possibly poolside at her estate in Montecito) exposes myths about editors and gives us a glimpse of what an editor’s job is really like.   

Ten Myths About Editors

1. Myth: An editor’s job is to edit manuscripts.

Truth: These days, editing manuscripts is only part of an editor’s job.

Editors are functional project managers with responsibilities extending through all areas of the book’s life cycle. A simplified sketch of a book’s life cycle includes the following steps:

- Query/Pitch

- Proposal/Partial

- Full Manuscript

- Contract Negotiations

- Revisions

- Line Edits

- Copy Edits

- Cover Art

- Jacket/PR Copy

- Proofs/Galleys

- Pre-Sales

- Advance Distribution

- Advance PR

- Distribution for Release

- Release PR

- Subrights Sales

- Returns

- Remainders

Even though this is a very rough and simplified outline, it still contains eighteen steps. Only six of the eighteen steps (Query/Pitch, Proposal/Partial, Manuscript, Revisions, Line Edits, Copy edits) can be said to be related to the editing side of the editor’s job. One of those, Proposal/Partial, is frequently combined with the query or pitch, especially with proven authors. And another, Copyedits, is generally delegated to another editor who specializes in this task.

Each item on this list can take weeks or months to complete. Multiple people touch the project, but the editor is the shepherd. The editor is usually the only one involved in every single step of this process, even though the level of involvement will vary from house to house and maybe from project to project. For example, in some houses, editors write jacket copy. At other houses, the marketing staff drafts the jacket copy based on a memo prepared by the editor or a tip sheet completed by the author.  

2. Myth: Pitching work at a conference makes an editor more interested in your manuscript.

Truth: Oh, boy. Dare I tell the truth here?

Formal pitch meetings are an essential part of the conference experience for editors because pitches are one way we connect with new writers. We also connect in hallways, elevators, banquet rooms, cocktail parties, public bathrooms, and any other place that writers can get close enough to read our name badges.

I found my success rate for finding new authors was roughly the same in elevators, bars and taxis as in formal pitch sessions. To be honest, I think pitches are about the worst way to connect with an editor. It’s a high-stress environment for the author and, well, let’s just say that it can feel a bit claustrophobic for the editor. Not exactly a good setting for a love connection.

I took pitches because it was a quick and dirty way to get through a lot of networking in a short time, and I usually remembered the pitchers when I saw their submissions. But pitches didn’t tell me whether the writer can deliver a publishable manuscript. Only pages can tell me that. Even the most memorable pitch won’t amount to anything if the manuscript doesn’t work, so I generally withheld judgments until I had actual pages to evaluate. 

3. Myth: Editors pass on good manuscripts because they can’t recognize works of genius.

Truth: Editors are the most educated, experienced and adept readers of raw work anywhere. Period. So then why do we hear all these stories of major bestsellers being rejected seventy-seven times before finally finding a publisher?

Publishers offer a certain number of a certain type of titles in a certain interval: four cozy mysteries per month, two literary anthologies every six months, eight short romance stories on alternating Wednesdays. Editors are allowed to buy ahead, but only so far.

Keep in mind that editors already have writers under contract for many of these slots. And we have a full roster of writers who get first crack at openings even if they’re not currently under contract. So even though we might need, say, forty-eight stories in a given calendar year, perhaps forty or more of those slots will be out of reach to new writers before they’ve penned a single word.

For the few slots available to newcomers, the competition will be fierce. The slightest shades of difference between equally good manuscripts can often determine which book gets published and which gets rejected. In such cases, the rejection really isn’t about the quality of a project. I have had to pass on great manuscripts because they didn’t fit our line-up, or because we didn’t have room for them, or because they duplicated something under contract, or for a thousand other reasons that didn’t have anything to do with the writer’s genius. Or with ours. 

4. Myth: Crushing the hopes of aspiring writers makes an editor feel powerful.

Truth: Most of the time, we’re too busy and too worried about our failing eyesight to think about things like power trips.

We don’t want to crush you. We want to help almost-there writers elevate their games. My biggest complaint about my acquisitions job, first, last, and always, was that I didn’t have enough time to groom new authors. Remember the rough task outline with eighteen items on it? Remember that each of these items can take weeks or months to complete? I didn’t have a lot of time left over to educate new writers, even though we all recognize that this lack of training can hurt the bottom line in the long run.

Another editor and I started the edittorrent blog (edittorrent.blogspot.com) as a way of trying to spread technical information about the craft of fiction. We knew we couldn’t spend a lot of time one on one with writers who weren’t under contract. But the blog lets us reach a lot of writers in relatively little time. 

5. Myth: Authors don’t need to worry about grammar because it’s the editor’s job to fix it.

Truth: A thousand times, no.

This is one of the most puzzling rumors out there. Yes, of course, editors and copyeditors fix grammar errors in manuscripts. Does that mean an author shares no responsibility for grammar and usage?

Here’s a sad truth. When I evaluated a submission, the first question in my mind was not, Is this story good enough to publish? My first question was, How many hours of my life will it take to get this manuscript ready? If every other paragraph contains a grammar or usage error, that translates into time that I could be spending on other tasks.

This is why it’s easy for an editor to equate bad grammar with other flaws: arrogance, lack of self-respect, lack of respect for us, disdain for the product you’re creating. If you don’t care enough to distinguish possessives from plurals, then we’re not going to care enough to give you anything more than a form rejection.

In other words, if you don’t worry about your grammar, neither will I. 

6. Myth: Editors play favorites with their authors.

Truth: We love you all the same, but some of you more than others.

It’s true that some authors receive more house support than others. There are many factors that come into play here: sales records, marketing decisions, Jupiter’s alignment, and whether we’ve run through the week’s chocolate ration before noon on Tuesday. 

That’s only partly in jest. Sales and marketing decisions factor strongly into how much “love” you’ll get from your publisher. Publishing is a business, but it’s a business driven by the unpredictable tastes and whims of the masses. Luck is that great intangible that controls the fate of many titles, despite the best efforts of fleets of salespeople and PR experts.

And, let’s face it, editors are people, too. If we’re having a bad week and you call to whinge about the facts that your jacket copy never mentions the hero’s peculiar aversion to ramen noodles and that the cover artist drew a castle with sixty-four windows when the castle in your book clearly has sixty-six–well, we might not have the energy to care quite as much as you’d like. Especially because we’ve already had to listen to a rant from the cover artist about the impossibility of compositing sixty-six windows onto a two-square-inch castle, and even we don’t remember the ramen noodle thing despite having read your manuscript a dozen times.

Now imagine that the ramen-ranter is on a two-book contract, and I had to go through all this on her first title. Human nature being what it is, do you think I’ll be excited to show her the cover for book two? No. I’ll be bracing myself for a bad experience. I’ll still show her the cover. I’ll still hope for huge sales. I’ll still do everything I’m supposed to do, because, remember, we “love” you all the same. But I’ll be thinking about damage control before picking up the phone or composing the e-mail. Wouldn’t you be?

If you’re not getting the attention and support you’d like from your house, the best solution is to stop playing the blame game. Go back to basics. Write the best darn manuscript you can write. Turn it in on time — better yet, turn it in early. Be polite and professional even during disagreements. Don’t quibble over details unless they’re important details, and by important we mean, “The woman on my cover has three arms.” Make yourself a deal: for every time you stet the proofs, you’ll do one extra thing to promote your book. Or for every phone call to your editor to challenge your revision letter, you’ll take an online writing course. Or for every day that you miss your deadline, you’ll take out an ad in a relevant journal.

In other words, pay attention to your bottom line. It’s about sales, yes, but it’s also about what it’s like to work with you. If you do something that creates a “love” deficit, restore the balance by doing something positive for yourself and your career.

We want you to succeed. We want every book we publish to be a smash success. Be a partner in that process instead of an obstacle, and you’ll feel plenty of love from everyone at your house. 

7. Myth: Contest wins really impress editors.

Truth: It depends.

I’m a big supporter of writing contests. Writers labor in isolation and deal with constant uncertainty. Contests can address both concerns by giving you clear, honest, sometimes even anonymous feedback from someone outside your normal circle. I love contests enough to act as final judge whenever asked (and whenever my schedule permits it).

That said, I’m rarely impressed by mentions of contest placements in query letters. I know that contest pools are like slush piles. On any given day, you can have a pile of good manuscripts or a pile of really bad ones. Placing in a contest doesn’t tell me much unless I know something about the level of competition in that pool.

Some contests have great reputations. A final in one of these is more likely to carry weight because we all recognize that the competition is strong. Other than that, they probably won’t count for much.

8. Myth: No news is good news.

Truth: No news is no news.

I remember fondly the days when I could respond to queries within a week. Requested fulls never lingered for more than thirty days in my in tray. I was an editing machine, churning through thousands of pages each month.

And then something happened.

First it was the cold queries. They started to mount until before I knew it, there were some several weeks old. Where had they all come from? I wasn’t ignoring them. I spent just as many hours on them each week as before, but the pile got bigger instead of smaller.

Then the requested manuscripts from new-to-us writers started to mount. I wanted to read them all right away. I intended to read each one the second it appeared in my inbox. But–but–there were page proofs due to the typesetter, and then someone turned in a manuscript late, and a piece of the website stopped functioning, and the art director wanted feedback on a new font, and–and–

It never ends. Editors talk a lot about being busy. That part is not a myth. If we could evaluate your work faster, we would. So usually, “no news” is just that, no news. We’ll get to your submission as soon as possible. Really. 

9. Myth: If an editor loves your book, you’ll sell well.

Truth: Nobody can predict sales.

But that doesn’t stop us from trying. We do P&Ls–profit and loss statements–and scrutinize sales data like neurosurgeons slicing into brains. Why does this futuristic sell better than that one? Why did that historical not sell at all? Was it the promo, the product, the dip in the stock market, the fact that everyone spent their book dollars on the new Harry Potter that week? Sometimes it’s impossible to tell.

Armed with conflicting data, we peer into our crystal balls and try to make sense of the future before it arrives. Sometimes we even guess right. These are educated guesses, after all.

With the advent of direct publishing, I’ve been fascinated with watching authors track their own sales records and try to make sense of it all. You get it now, don’t you? You can sort of guess where things will go, but that’s about it. The best advice I can give you is to look for general trends and try not to let the sales figures make you crazy. 

10. Myth: Editors lead glamorous, exciting, celebrity-filled lives.

Truth: True! Absolutely true! And now if you’ll excuse me, I have to climb aboard my private jet to zip down to a gazillionaire author’s private island for a fabulous weekend party. Everyone who is anyone will be there! Ta-ta, darlings! 

***

Has Theresa banished your myths about editors or the editorial process? Any questions about an editor’s life or function?

***

Author Avery Flynn joins us on Monday, February 20th.

***

Bio: Theresa Stevens is the Publisher of STAR Guides Publishing, a nonfiction publishing company with the mission to help writers write better books. After earning degrees in creative writing and law, she worked as a literary attorney agent for a boutique firm in Indianapolis where she represented a range of fiction and nonfiction authors. After a nine-year hiatus from the publishing industry to practice law, Theresa worked as chief executive editor for a highly acclaimed small romance press, and her articles on writing and editing have appeared in numerous publications for writers. Visit her blog at http://edittorrent.blogspot.com/ where she and her co-blogger share their knowledge and hardly ever argue about punctuation.

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53 Responses to “Ten Myths About Editors – Theresa Stevens”

  1. Hi Theresa,

    I knew it, being an editor is all about glamour. Reading as a profession sounds great, but trying to rewrite as you read would be tough. How did you become an editor? Best part, worst part? How do you tell a client to throw out the manuscript and start again?

    Mary Jo

    Posted by Mary Jo Burke | February 17, 2012, 6:42 am
    • Mary Jo, when I was getting my degree in creative writing, my professors encouraged me to get into editing. With their help and with the assistance of some author friends, I was able to build a network that led to work. My first formal job in publishing was as an agent, rather than as an editor, but from there I moved into editing.

      My professors were right, by the way. As much as I love writing, editing requires a different skill set and it’s something that’s very natural to me.

      I never tell a client to throw out a manuscript. But I might tell them to re-think it!

      Posted by Theresa Stevens | February 17, 2012, 2:32 pm
  2. Good morning! Another terrific post that made me smile. I can’t say anything on this list surprised me, but you did confirm a few things.

    I loved the ramen noodles!

    Posted by Adrienne Giordano | February 17, 2012, 7:33 am
    • People really do pick silly fights sometimes. I once had an author go into meltdown mode because she didn’t like the words used to describe her hero on her jacket cover. Those words were taken directly from the first paragraph in the novel that described the hero. She wrote ‘em. Not us. Thankfully, that sort of thing is rare.

      Posted by Theresa Stevens | February 17, 2012, 2:46 pm
      • Theresa, i feel you’re being a bit disingenuous here. You make it sound like authors only complain about trivial and insubstantial things, when I think you know full well the reality is that publishing houses sometimes force horrible decisions on authors — such as cover art and titles that fit a genre marketing profile but have ridiculously little with what the books are actually about. Joking about authors getting short shrift from a publishing house because the editor in question didn’t get enough chocolate during a given week does little to inspire renewed confidence.

        Frankly, it sounds like you have too much to do, to do right by your others. The more I see how in-house-editing sausage is made, the more I see that disciplined self-publishing is the smarter choice.

        Posted by Jim Thomsen | February 19, 2012, 3:40 pm
  3. Wow. I learned a LOT from this and I thought I knew how busy editors are!

    I’m curious about #7 – you say some contests hold more weight. Is it possible to name names? I’d like to know which ones to enter since the contest circuit is not cheap. :)

    Thanks for this peek into an editor’s life. Sounds crazy. But wonderful.

    Posted by Kat Cantrell | February 17, 2012, 8:02 am
  4. Thank you for this glimpse, Theresa! I’m dumbfounded as to how many of these myths are in many of the magazines and books that I’ve read and thought were true.

    Posted by Kelly Wolf | February 17, 2012, 8:54 am
    • I am also frequently amused by the bad information floating around out there. It’s like any field, I guess — there is some variation from workplace to workplace, and you can’t really know what it’s like until you’ve been there!

      Posted by Theresa Stevens | February 17, 2012, 2:50 pm
  5. Theresa -

    How you write knock-out posts for RU month after month, I’ll never know. But I think your knowledge and YOU are fabulous.

    I promise to never whine about windows or ramen noodles. That being said, I’m still chugging along on the novella that may make you love me less :D.

    Hugs on a Friday!
    K-

    Posted by Kelsey Browning | February 17, 2012, 8:59 am
  6. Morning Theresa!

    You have a chocolate ration!??? I KNEW editors lived the life of Riley. Gosh darnit. =)

    Can I ask what kind of training you guys go through? I’m assuming it’s mostly a being-brought-up-in-the-business job, where you learn as you go – but is an English degree helpful? Or is just diving in and learning the ropes the best way?

    Thanks for a mahhhh-velous post dahling….enjoy your margaritas on board the plane! =)

    carrie

    Posted by Carrie Spencer | February 17, 2012, 9:13 am
    • My degrees are in creative writing and law, and they’ve been about equally useful. But I’ll tell you, the best crash course in editing is in the slush pile. You can read Hemingway for years and never learn a fraction of what you’ll learn from reading raw work.

      And then there comes a day when you take on a manuscript and start working on it, and you realize all the things you should have spotted on first reading that you missed. And those things translate into hours of work. So you watch for them next time, and in this way, we learn and grow.

      Posted by Theresa Stevens | February 17, 2012, 2:54 pm
  7. Thanks so much for this blog, Theresa! You’ve clarified a lot of things I wondered about. I always knew editors were busy, but I was mainly thinking in terms of submissions (as I think most unpubbed writers do). I hadn’t really considered all the other aspects of your work. Thanks for opening our eyes to the big picture!

    Posted by Becke Davis (Becke Martin) | February 17, 2012, 10:32 am
  8. Brilliant as always, Dahling!

    So in summary: pitch wherever you can, polish up that grammar, research contests you enter, keep submitting, and if glamour is what you’re seeking, forget writing, become an editor? :)

    Ta ta until next time. DO keep em coming,

    Sonali

    Posted by Sonali Dev | February 17, 2012, 11:25 am
  9. Loved this post, too. I think all writers should read #6. I’m trying to think of how to send it a few I know, without being too obvious…

    Posted by Jeffe Kennedy | February 17, 2012, 12:27 pm
  10. Terrific information, Theresa! Thanks for always giving it to us straight.

    Posted by Tracey Devlyn | February 17, 2012, 12:39 pm
  11. Hi Theresa!

    Some self-pubbed books are in dire need of editorial input and because of that, they are collectively maligned by many.

    But I’ve also read my share of real stinkers from NYT and USA best-selling authors who are published with big houses, and I wonder if an editor had read the manuscript at all.

    I’m assuming a multi-published author doesn’t need as much “guidance” as a newbie, but in some cases, I think the author got a pass based on their previous sales and familiar brand.

    I’m not sure if you can answer this but I’ll throw it out there. Do editors devote as much time to the fifth or sixth manuscript from a best-selling author as opposed to their third ms?

    Really enjoyed your post. Thank you!

    Posted by Jennifer Tanner | February 17, 2012, 3:48 pm
    • Oh, boy. That’s a sticky question. So much of this is really case sensitive. I mean, maybe the copy editor marked everything correctly, or maybe the author stetted all of it. Maybe they were breaking in a new copy editor. I once worked on a freelance project for a house where the timeline was so compressed that we were told to ignore style rules and only correct egregious grammar errors. So, there are a lot of possible answers to this question.

      Can it happen that we let a beloved, tried-and-true author with a great sales record slide on a few style points? Sure. Or, as one of my staff editors once said to me, “She’s a NYT best seller. I figure she knows what she’s doing.”

      I’m not a big fan of the “let it slide” mentality. But sometimes other concerns will dominate.

      Posted by Theresa Stevens | February 17, 2012, 3:54 pm
      • I would say that’s the biggest difference between editing for a house (where you have to keep the publisher’s vision in mind) and working for self-publishing authors: in working for a publisher, you try to merge two visions, that of the publisher (and your own) and that of the author. When the author pays out of their own pocket, their vision for the book is paramount, and it becomes more imperative to make it work within that structure and within those confines, even if you can see a better way (eg, major restructuring).

        For both, a major question is ‘what do the readers expect’ and in the case of well-known authors, the reader might expect something – say a stylistic quirk – that the author did in their last book, however much you hate it.

        Posted by green_knight | February 18, 2012, 6:12 am
        • That’s all very true, GK. It’s actually a little bit easier to edit in-house because the style sheets help with the decision process. But then, as a private editor, I don’t have to worry about cover art or jacket copy or sales reports. That’s nice, too. I like being able to just focus on the book.

          Posted by Theresa Stevens | February 18, 2012, 10:05 pm
  12. Thanks so much for this post. I just had an editor give me an offer for my first sale. This post has given me some good insights.

    I’ve been stressing about what she must think about me (bombarding her with questions about her expectations and the contract). I feel like I’m 16 all over again with my first boyfriend, analyzing his every word and worried he’s going to break up with me for saying the wrong thing.

    Your list of duties also helps me to understand what she’s going through. Great post.

    Love your gravatar on Twitter, too, BTW!

    Posted by Larissa Hoffman | February 17, 2012, 3:54 pm
  13. I find point number ten amusing.

    Now, since edittorent keeps linking to this site, I might as well cut out the middle man (not in that way) and add this blog to my watchlist.

    Posted by Chihuahua0 | February 17, 2012, 4:06 pm
    • Edittorrent is my “regular” blog — where Alicia Rasley joins me in ridding the world of bad punctuation and misplaced modifiers. It’s a special calling, and I’m glad to have a co-blogger on that journey. :)

      I blog here once a month, except that this week I also helped judge a special contest.

      In any case, I’d say both blogs are worth reading, but I might be biased. ;)

      Posted by Theresa Stevens | February 17, 2012, 6:54 pm
  14. On #3, is it also the case that the manuscript that eventually sells may be substantially different from the one that went to the very first editor on the list? So they didn’t reject a work of genius that went on to sell a zillion copies, they rejected a book that at the time they saw it, still needed some work on it.

    Posted by Becky Black | February 17, 2012, 4:48 pm
    • Could be, Becky. But honestly, in my experience, the changes from one version to another are usually minor when the author is acting without direction from a skilled editor. There are exceptions from bold authors who are willing to try radical changes in pursuit of a better book, but more often, authors get locked into one way of thinking about the story and merely tinker around the edges.

      Posted by Theresa Stevens | February 17, 2012, 6:57 pm
  15. Theresa,

    Thanks for another terrific post! And thanks everyone for dropping by.

    Have a great weekend.

    Posted by Jennifer Tanner | February 17, 2012, 10:53 pm
  16. Another excellent post there. I’ve learned a lot about cover art recently, although it turns out that other people are even pickier about how the cover should look than I am. I also know how lucky I am in having input: friends even at equally small indie publishing houses have complained bitterly that their covers aren’t as good as the rough version I’ve been showing them and they’ve had no opportunity to make changes.

    Incidentally, my suggestions were ‘can we resize the minotaur slightly?’ and ‘can we tweak the font a little?’ both of which my editor also asked for in emails that crossed in the ether with mine.

    Posted by Stevie Carroll | February 18, 2012, 3:47 am
    • Cover art is tricky! You want it to look great in tiny avatar sizes and the bigger physical book sizes, and it can be difficult to serve both those masters. The size of a minotaur can make a huge difference, as can the font.

      I find fonts especially hard. My graphic designer and I spent half the week last week discussing fonts. God bless her. I say something insane like, “It can’t be cursive but it can’t look like type and it can’t look too much like handwriting.” It’s a wonder she can work with me at all, with nonsense instructions like that. Seriously, fonts. Guaranteed to make me crazy. :)

      Posted by Theresa Stevens | February 18, 2012, 10:13 pm
  17. Insightful as always.

    Wes

    Posted by Wes | February 18, 2012, 8:28 am
  18. Thanks, Theresa. I’m very grateful for Edittorent. It’s a great resource.

    Cia

    Posted by Cia | February 18, 2012, 3:43 pm
  19. Wow. Insightful post (but I’m exhausted just from reading all the responsibilities an editor has). It seems writers might have little choice but to self-publish, if this reflects how overburdened editors are.

    I appreciate the tone of your post; I haven’t found many editors’ blogs that convey the information writers need in as kind and light a tone as yours.

    Posted by Lynette | February 21, 2012, 6:01 pm
    • Lynette, what makes you think that the freelancers you will have to hire unless you’re competent with all aspects of publishing are going to be any diferrent? They run a business, so they do their own marketing and website maintenance and accounting (at least the billing and bookkeeping parts) and they’re usually (hopefully!) dealing with more than one project in different stages of the process and…

      Posted by green_knight | February 21, 2012, 6:50 pm
      • Not sure what the comment refers to.

        I’m a freelance editor (and I teach a ton of writing classes as well), so I’m quite aware of how busy freelancers are.

        Still, perhaps because they have some small flexibility in their work as business owners, freelancers can often keep up (an dictate) with their work load.

        And so far, my workload hasn’t included:

        - Advance Distribution

        - Subrights Sales

        - Returns

        - Remainders,

        which Theresa mentions above.

        Posted by Lynette Benton | February 24, 2012, 10:28 am
        • freelancers can often keep up (an dictate) with their work load

          As can people employed by publishers. Sometimes it works out, sometimes it doesn’t, but from where I’m looking it seems as if both do equal amounts of juggling. Not always of the same element (I don’t have to sit in meetings unless it’s one-on-one with new clients), but I have a number of tasks that an in-house editor does not have.

          The main difference is probably that a (temporarily) not-very-busy employee is not very busy and can take more time on each task, while a not-very-busy freelancer will be far more frantic about securing new work and creating on-spec projects…

          Posted by green_knight | February 24, 2012, 10:44 am
  20. Love it!

    When I was visiting at Harlequin, editors often told me that they booked one day a week to work from home to do the actual editing. The other 5 days, they did get some editing in, but it was mostly spent on their other tasks. 1/5 days is not a lot of time for edits.

    Posted by Emma Cunningham | February 24, 2012, 8:27 am
    • Don’t forget that editing is brain work. I am currently revising my own novel, and I don’t have a lot of time to devote to it, so I’m doing it in bits and snatches – but having spent a whole day of marking up 30K of manuscript (Oh Storyist, how I love thee) I can now go back and tackle a scene here and there, taking fifteen minutes to read through one bit, or simply glancing at the beats in the outline of another and churn them over while I do mechanical tasks. (There are also plenty of editors who do readthroughs and quick markups on their phones/Kindles during commuting). Occasionally you need a block of time to devote to a text, but just because someone isn’t sitting and staring at a mss doesn’t mean they’re not working on it.
      On the contrary, I sometimes find that going away helps to spot larger issues.

      Posted by green_knight | February 24, 2012, 8:37 am
  21. Thanks for the information. An overview like this answers a number of questions about pitching at conferences and the role contests play in getting your work read.

    Posted by Diana Stevan | February 29, 2012, 9:40 am

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  5. [...] Ten myths about editors It’s not all three-Martini lunches and evil cackling while crushing fragile writers underfoot apparently. Don’t quibble over details unless they’re important details, and by important we mean, “The woman on my cover has three arms.” * [...]

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