I returned from a week's vacation and put nose back to grindstone on Wednesday. That makes for a short and hectic week, even though it feels as though I didn't accomplish much. What I did accomplish is a short story, landing a new gig, and clearing out a lot of email messages. So, I'm back to working long days, but liking what I do.
The new gig is a manuscript critique. What makes it unusual is that the manuscript was written--and published--by a 13-year old boy. His parents are supportive and handling marketing and promotion, although they admit they don't really know what they're doing. Have I got a referral for them!
Anyway, I warned the boy's parents that, as a "professional critic and editor," I am not the author's friend. I do not (nor will I) hold the author's hand or flatter him, if only because it's my job to point out every flaw I detect. However, if I praise something, then they can be sure that it's well-earned.
The short story I wrote is for the western anthology project. I've got at least one more to go, which will make my contribution total five stories. I hope I can finish it this week. If so, I'll have a collection of documents to send to my editor who, I'm sure, waits with bated (not baited) breath.
The whole bated/baited breath homophone puts me in mind of other common errors that make my teeth itch. All too often I see "loose" used instead of "lose." There are many more, but I'm trying to control my blood pressure. It's the little things that set me off, because the devil really is in the details. As an editor, I'm all about those persnickety details.
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