The past week has been lovely for me, with wonderful words from authors whose books I’ve worked on. Michael and Kathleen Gear, whom I’ve copyedited for many years now, told me that I’d done a wonderful job on their latest book and said that they told their editor they “cherish” me as a copyeditor. They’re fantastic people, and I cherish my working relationship with them, too.
Then Jon Sprunk, whose first novel Shadow’s Son is coming out from Pyr in 2010, received his copyedits and wrote me with the following:
Just received the copyedits today. Wow! I mean, Lou was singing your praises, but… wow! You caught things I would have never seen. The book is going to be a great deal better for it. Thank you SO much!
Copyeditors and authors don’t always get the opportunity to work together, so the relationship can sometimes seem antagonistic to new authors. Truthfully, too, not every copyeditor has the ability to work well with authors. When the relationship does work, however, everyone is happier and the book benefits.
If you’d like to see a wonderful recounting of how an author works with his longtime copyeditor, please check out the entries from November 25 and December 2 of 2009 on Guy Gavriel Kay’s Under Heaven journal. I’m not Guy’s copyeditor, but I’m not the only good one out there. :-)
I'm a freelance copyeditor specializing in fantasy and science fiction. SF/F novels I have copyedited have been finalists for (and have sometimes won) the Hugo, Nebula, Arthur C. Clarke, Endeavour, Golden Spur, John W. Campbell Memorial, Quill, Locus, Philip K. Dick, British Science Fiction, British Fantasy, and World Fantasy awards. In 2007 I became the first and only copyeditor ever short-listed for a World Fantasy Award.