Thursday, November 30, 2006

JENNY: Copy Edits and Shorter Pith

For those of you tracking us through the publishing journey, we are now two thirds of the way through the copy edits. That’s when the revised manuscript comes back having been edited by someone trained to find all the grammar and punctuation mistakes along with continuity and factual errors and anything else we screwed up. We still have to go over the manuscript because you never know who you’re going to draw as a copy editor. You can get some real nightmares who think they know how to write better than you do and start changing your words or sometimes they’re just inept and don’t catch your mistakes. And really, it’s up to you to know grammar and punctuation, they’re your tools as much as vocabulary and syntax. Our copy editor was pretty good except for a tendency to miss the forest for the trees. One of my faves was a line Mare has where she’s explaining their family history to Crash and says that they were pretty lucky in the past in that there were only a couple of pond duckings and just one burning at the stake, and then adds that heads are gonna roll for that one “if we ever get time travel.” The copy editor changed that to “time to travel.” That’s the kind of thing you just look at and shudder. Thank God we caught it.

Since there are three of us, the copy edit became a moveable feat. I got it the day before Thanksgiving (sent to me by Needles, the same person who sent me the copy edit at the SMP dinner in Atlanta, I believe) and sent it on to Krissie the following Monday (hey, I had pies to make and then I had to go over the river and through the woods), who turned it around at lightning speed and sent it to Eileen who was supposed to get it today except they’re having ice storms where she is. We’ll see it one more time, in galleys, also called page proofs, sheets of paper that look exactly like the pages of the finished book. I love those. We’re not supposed to rewrite on those, but I do. I’m going to try not to this time because I think the book is in pretty good shape except for Toledo and the shivers, but everybody else is slapping my hands on those so I’m just going to have to let it go.

Then there’s the copy line for the cover. The others were too long and not sexy enough. I don’t do sexy. I’m sorry, I’m just not one of those “He was a hunka hunka burnin’ love” blurb writers. But Jen came back and said marketing needed a shorter blurb so it would fit on the cover and it needed to be hotter to describe the book. So I suggested “THE UNFORTUNATE MISS FORTUNES: Coming their brains out on every page. “ She loved it but she didn’t think marketing would go for it. Those people in marketing; no vision. So then I tried, “The only thing wilder than their magic is their men,” and I think that one stuck. We’ll see. Well, you’ll see. As soon as we get a cover design, we’ll post it here.

So that’s where we are. Moving right along. At a fairly rapid clip for publishing, really. Next time you see one of those shows where a character writes a book and it’s in the bookstores the following month, you can snicker because you know the truth.

It takes longer than that to write the blurb.

Friday, November 10, 2006

JENNY: Pith and Cover Copy

Yep, we're done, THANK GOD, and I love it, too. And then Jen e-mailed us and said,

"I need a wonderful, pithy copyline for the front cover of THE UNFORTUNATE MISS FORTUNES (and we'll have something to show you soon on the cover, so stay tuned). What would be a good copyline, leading into the title and enticing readers?"

And of course Eileen and Krissie were out playing in the wildflowers or something, so there I was, forced to pith. I have no idea what the copyline will be, but here are some of the idea I sent Jen:

Love. Magic. Relatives who want to suck your power out through your ears.
Some days it's just one damn thing after another.

Love* Magic* Bunnies*
Up to their asterisks in trouble.

Dee, Lizzie, and Mare are going through a bad spell . . .
Or three.
Magic happens.

Dee, Lizzie, and Mare aren't very good at magic.

Yeah, you try it. It's not that easy.

And I'm still in there pitching for us to put the first scene up, so maybe I'll be able to talk everybody into it for Christmas. It's a long time until the July release date, but it'd be such a nice Christmas present for all of you who read the blog. And of course, we'll put the cover up here first. I'm very excited to see the cover although with that long title and then three author names plus the pithy copy line, I'm not expecting to see a lot of cover art. We've pretty much filled up the sucker already.

But now it's all the fun stuff. Cover art and ads and publication. And reviews and I think I'll go lie down again. Argh.

Coming to a bookstore near you in July of 2007.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

EILEEN: We're really done

Now it's my turn. Krissie sent the manuscript to me, then I put in the stuff I needed to and forwarded it to Jenny. And, again--and Krissie's right;it better be the last time--I'm finished. All three of us are also going over for continuity things(Krissie had to change Venice to Toledo, Spain among other things),and I, dubbed Minister of BackStory, had to put it in in dribs and drabs, so I, too had to read the whole thing, and yeah, this could just be all hype, but I have to tell you, it isn't. This is such a fun, full, unique, kickass book, that I can't wait to share it with you guys. I can't tell you what a rush it is to work with two other authors who have such singular and different voices than I do. For anybody who sings, it's going from solo work to a trio who has perfect harmony. Maybe you won't notice when you read. But trust me, it adds to the flavor. And each of the sisters is absolutely singular, not to mention their true loves(yum) and Xan. Ah, Xan. I think we've given up casting her. There just isn't anybody out there like her.

And if we haven't told you before, barring flood and famine, St. Martin's has told us that The Unfortunate Miss Fortunes will be out July, 2007. Perfect beach reading! So now, as soon as Jenny gets back off the road, it'll be her turn, and with all the planets in alignment, or whatever, we can give it to Jen Enderlin and let her bring it into the world. Now, I'm off to torture some very horny fairies. Who knew?