When I was in college, I used to go around telling people I wanted to spend some time living on the Louisiana bayou, writing a novel. I had romantic visions of typing away while sipping lemonade on a porch and fanning myself, with only a big hound dog to keep me company. As I mummified myself in wool and down to trundle off to science class on frigid New England winter days, the thought of all that creative freedom and humid air on my bare skin seemed heavenly to me.
I still kind of like the idea, but I haven’t made it to the swampland yet. When I graduated, I headed cross-country to California instead and have been here ever since. The good news is, I actually am writing a novel. It’s every bit as scary and challenging as I thought it would be, but I’m not giving up, even though sometimes I find my head spinning with so many other responsibilities that the prospect of writing a single page is daunting.
I don’t have the luxury of working on my manuscript all day, but I do have a secret weapon: literary editing is my profession. I’ve been collaborating with other authors on their books for a decade, and along the way I’ve learned a lot about what makes a manuscript work and what doesn’t. Memoirs, thrillers, how-to guides, historical fiction, food books, travel anthologies—you name it, I’ve read it. One of the subjects I’ll be blogging about here is what it’s like to be an editor-turned-author: the blessing of understanding the building blocks of a compelling story, the curse of compulsive self-editing; the agony of reworking a scene over and over, the ecstasy of crafting a dialogue that feels really authentic.
I’ll also be exploring another of my favorite topics: grammar. If you want to nerd out about dangling participles, correct usage of lay and lie, and even basic punctuation, you’re in the right place. So welcome to my blog. I know it’s only one of millions, but I hope you’ll stick around to see how this all turns out.
Thanks for reading,