Friday, February 29, 2008


A writer is somebody for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.” Thomas Mann, Essays of Three Decades, 1947, ( )

I didn’t have to wait until the next, next week for my edited manuscript. Shortly after posting my blog last Friday, I received that long awaited email from Vickie, my editor at ArcheBooks. After noting its arrival in my mailbox, I couldn’t bring myself to click on it right away.

What if she (my editor) hates it or says it’s all wrong? So, I paced, surfed the web, ate lunch, and read a few more chapters of The Birth House, by Ami McKay, before working up my nerve to open the email.

A cover letter accompanied the manuscript. In the first paragraph I read, “This is great mainstream fiction!” Yes, an editor actually used an exclamation point! I let out the breath I didn’t know I was holding.

The second paragraph said “…so there are no major revisions to the plot.” Even better.

She did offer suggestions and pointed out a couple of areas to rewrite, but even that was okay because I have no problems accepting constructive criticism.

It’s when I read “…have the revised MSS (manuscript) back to me by the end of next week…” that true panic set in.

I don’t believe it’s an exaggeration to say that there are instances when the task of reworking a single sentence occupies thirty minutes or more of my time. Therefore, thinking about revising an entire manuscript within a week’s time, brought about a severe case of mental paralysis.

As it also happened, this was the week my husband and I were staying at our daughter’s house to watch our 15-month-old grandson, Sebastian, and our grand dog, Devo. Our daughter, escorted by our son-in-law, was in Tampa to sit for the Florida Bar Exam. This meant I would not even have the security of working on revisions in my own little nook.

I wrote Vickie back something to the effect that this may be the worst possible week to expect me to complete any sort of task. She replied, bless her, “don’t worry…life is what happens when we have something else to do,” and said she would be ready for the revisions whenever I could get them to her.

It ‘s funny, once the pressure of a deadline was removed, writing and revising moved along smoothly and quickly, even while listening to Snuffalaphagus chasing his escaped meatball in the background.

Thanks in a large part to my husband Kim, for his help, his understanding of what this book means to me and his incredibly close bond to Sebastian, I not only finished the revisions within the original deadline period, but I also had time to play with and enjoy the most adorable grandson ever.

Thanks for stopping by. See you next week.

Jane Kennedy Sutton
Author of The Ride (to be released by ArcheBooks Publishing)

Tags: The Ride, Archebooks, Thomas Mann, quotegarden, Birth House, Ami McKay, Snuffalaphagus , Florida Bar Exam, Revisions

1 comment:

Sandy Lender said...

This is great news on top of great news on top of great news. I'm excited for you and pleased to see the progress!

Congratulations, and keep us posted.

Sandy L.
"Some days, I just want the dragon to win."

Jane's Ride - Novelist Jane Kennedy Sutton's journey through the ups and downs of the writing, publishing and marketing world