1. What drew you to INCONVENIENT?
The voice. It was so honest and unadorned. By "unadorned," I guess I mean pure. It made an instant connection with me. I think it's because I believed in Alyssa.
2. What was the easiest AND hardest part of editing INC?
I'm going to chicken out and say I can't think of any hard parts. The hardest part of any editing, for me, is being clear in my own thoughts. I fear being vague or unclear. I'd hate for the writer to misinterpret my thoughts and rewrite based on that. The easiest part... This is going to sound strange but the easiest part was identifying what wasn't working. Sometimes, it's not that easy. You read and read and think, "SOMETHING'S not right but I can't put my finger on it...." With INCONVENIENT, the writing was so strong and smooth that it was easy to identify when something wasn't working and why. Thankfully, those occasions were pretty rare.
3. What advice do you have for writers about to embark on the editing journey?
The first, most important rule when embarking on the editing journey is to remember that no one hates you. No one is out to make your book bad. No one is out to hurt your feelings. The suggestions you get are meant to make what your editor already thinks is a great book even better.
4. What do you like best AND least about your job?
Truthfully, the best thing about my job is the writers I get to work with. They're some of the savviest people out there and it's a joy to collaborate with them on their book. The thing I like least is all the putzy stuff that takes me away from that. I'd much rather edit a 100,000 word manuscript than a touch a 16 page contract.
5. Tips for writers and editors to work best together
Listen to one another. Ask questions, get clarifications. Be flexible. Always allow time to think. The editor's suggestion that you think is poppycock ten seconds after reading it might be brilliant after you let it marinate in your brain a couple days.
Margie Discusses Her Editing Process
1. What drew you to Flux?
Brian really got Alyssa and what I was trying to do with Inconvenient. His enthusiasm for the story and the characters and the direction he wanted to take the novel, really spoke to me. (I mean, how could you NOT want to work with someone who tell you how much he loves your book and your writing?).
2. What was the easiest/hardest part of editing INC?
The easiest part was that I agreed with EVERY revision point Brian made. There were some things I knew weren't working, and I wanted to make better, but didn't know HOW. And he had problems with the same things I did, so that was good. The hardest part was the extent of revisions. I had to cut 20K words, and if you revise you know you can't just cut. You have to add too. So that was a daunting process.
3. What advice do you have for writers embarking on the editing journey?
Go into it trusting that your editor knows what s/he is doing. I hear so many writers say, “This is in really good shape. So if an editor/agent tells me to change a lot, they're not for me.” Nothing is perfect. Even after extensive revisions, there's always more you can do. And, if an editor wants to buy your novel, that means they love it, they believe in it, and they also know how to make it the best version of itself.
4. What tips do you have for writers and editors to work best together?
I said to trust your editor, and that's definitely true. BUT, if you really have a problem with a suggestion, talk it out. See where the other person is coming from. You don't want to hate the end product. Ask lots of questions if something is confusing. I felt bad doing that, but in the end, no one wants you to revise the book in a direction neither you nor the editor was envisioning. Better to ask a billion times (ok maybe not a billion, maybe a hundred) and get it right, than not ask and waste your and your editor's time.
Thank you so much to Brian and Margie for stopping by! I am anxious to read Inconvenient! For more information on Margie be sure to visit her website and to learn about more Flux titles stop by their website.