A week ago I got my work back from my editor (finally!) after three-four weeks of waiting. I could have kept my work for longer myself, but I sent it to them as soon as I was ready, happy to have it off my hands for a while. I spent the time reading and relaxing, writing casually on some other projects, and that time has been absolutely gold. But I knew I was getting close to my editor getting back to me, so I was getting anxious.
Let me just say this: I’m an indie author, meaning I’m self-published and that I pay for my editor out of my own pocket. I know a lot of indie authors don’t work with editors, and many people can’t afford it which I understand, but I absolutely recommend it.
So I get the email. At this point I’ve already decided that I’m going to look at the edits, do a once-over and then leave it for a while.
So I open the email. I’m pretty anxious at this point, feeling like I’m waiting for bad news. There are some initial comments in the body of the email. And… it’s not too bad. All very reasonable, all very manageable. Sweet, this is fine. I go to open the document. I’m ready for pain, punishment, whatever. But at the same time I’m hating this.
I open the document. I start scrolling. There’s thousands of notes in here, I can tell by using the editing tool, but there’s also thousands of words so that not really a big issue. I get through the first page, the first chapter. I keep going. I’m just looking them over, reading the notes, seeing what suggestions have been made, what the comments are saying. I start scrolling faster and faster.
It’s not bad. It’s not bad at all.
At first I’m super excited about this. Like, this is amazing, why was I worried? This is absolutely great! At the same time I’m questioning myself: why aren’t there more comments? There has to be something wrong with this?! It’s my writing after all, and it sucks.
I do what I promised myself. I close the document, send an email to my editor saying thanks, and then I leave it for a few days.
Those days have passed now, and I’ve started doing the editing. From top to bottom, I’m going through everything, considering every comment and alteration carefully. This isn’t going to be very difficult. I’m impressed, first with my editor, then with myself. It’s not too bad.
It’s not too bad.
I suppose that’s why I wanted to write this post. I’m highly skilled at bringing myself down and seeing the worst in myself. I was expecting my manuscript to be torn apart by hands more professional than my own. But I’ve looked them over, I’ve seen that most of it is minor things, grammatical things, small mistakes here and there, and easy ways to fix it. And that feeling of know that my writing isn’t too bad, has given me all the confidence I needed to carry on with this.