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Thursday, October 13, 2011

Book Six for Llewellyn--The Vision Meeting

As some of you know, I finished my sixth book for Llewellyn a few months ago, and sent it off to my lovely acquisitions editor, Elysia Gallo (who would be one of my favorite people in the world even if she wasn't my acquisitions editor). The book was tentitively titled "50 Rituals for the Everyday Witch," and was the third book in the "Everyday Witch" series, which already includes Everyday Witch A to Z and Everyday Witch A to Z Spellbook.

Today they held the Visions Meeting for the book. Here is how Elysia described these meetings on Facebook:



"Vision is the meeting where we read a whole manuscript by unsuspecting authors,tear it apart, put it back together again, and send the author pages upon pages of annoying, nit-picking notes. "


Sadly, that's not much of an exaggeration! But what she doesn't mention is that all these changes usually result in a much better book--that's the point of the whole thing. And at least this time I only got SIX pages of notes. When I was working on book two, the first Everyday Witch A to Z, I got ELEVEN pages. (Book 1, Circle, Coven & Grove, got no changes at all, beyond a few grammatical things, lulling me in to a false sense of security.) I believe there might have been crying. Also whining, pouting, and possibly threats to quit writing forever. Then I made the requested changes, and the finished book was much better. This was actually a defining moment for me as an author. I learned something about the process, and about sometimes needing to let go of my original vision of a book. In fact, it was after that whole thing that I wrote the following haiku for Elysia (yes, we write each other haiku on occasion--what, you don't write haiku for your editor?):


Here is what I know
When an author is in doubt
Editor is right


Does this mean the editor is always right? Not at all. And sometimes, as an author, you have to stick to your guns if there is something that you believe shouldn't be changed. On the other hand, I can't stress too much the importance of having an open mind

That's why they call it Vision.

By the way--in today's Vision Meeting, they cut 12 of the 50 rituals. Something tells me I need to come up with a new title...




5 comments:

  1. That's a little intimidating...! But I agree that if it makes a book better, it's worth it, even if it hurts...! Hang in there - maybe you just need to come up with 12 new rituals to replace the old ones?

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  2. They liked the last 12 rituals, but had to cut them due to the length of the book. But we'll figure out something fun to do with them eventually...

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  3. I love that haiku. I think I'm adding it to my bulletin board. :D

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  4. Hang in there! And whatever you do, don't quit writing, I love your books...:)

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  5. Lisa--Elysia loves it too :-) she has it posted by her desk.

    KiaLynn--No worries! The only thing that would make me stop writing is if people stopped buying my books. It's a dirty job, but someone has to do it..

    And revisions are going well. Got a brilliant idea last night on how to fix some problems. Well, it was late at night, so I HOPE it was brilliant :-)

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