Daily Archives: October 25, 2010

Finished proof-reading “The Meaning of Vengeance”

I was supposed to get the proof to my editor by today, so technically I guess I wasn’t late.  But still, I thought I’d have it done much earlier.  As it was, I was rushing to get it done by this afternoon. 

It was both harder and easier than I expected.  Harder, because I’m a perfectionist.  I kept going over it slowly, trying not to miss anything.  I corrected a major grammar mistake (accidentally using a word twice) and fixed a sentence, after Erich pointed out that it would read smoother as one sentence with a colon, rather than two separate sentences. 

But ultimately it was easier than I was making it, because I was tweaking sentences here and there, correcting awkward phrasing.  And when I was done with all of that, I re-read my editor’s injunction to not do that, at this stage, because there wasn’t time for rewriting along those lines.  So I threw it all out.  Or most of it.  There was one sentence where I’d commented on the smell of rotten flesh at the scene of a burned farmstead.  That one absolutely had to go.  Iceland in the middle of December would be far too cold for anything to be rotting.  Corpses would freeze within a day or two, and certainly my hero wouldn’t be able to smell anything. 

Luckily, my editor appeared to accept that correction.  I won’t be ridiculed for that bit of foolishness.  Some of my dialog, on the other hand…

Ah, well.  It’s out of my hands now.  And overall, it’s a good story.  But it’s always tempting to keep tweaking. 

When I get my galley proof of the novella — in a few weeks, I gather — I’ll only have about seven days to go through it, so I’ll have to be faster than I was this time around.

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