Now let me turn to an issue you may not get the straight facts about. I’m speaking from my own experience and from what many of my authors have told me.
The first thing you need to know is that what publishers care about is making money. Great literature is of no interest to them. It used to be, back in the olden days, but now that traditional publishers are mostly gigantic business conglomerates, they couldn’t care less about good writing. Read More
I’ve worked with authors all around the world. For some foreign authors, English is their second language. The first thing I do is ask who their target reader is. Is it the American reader? Do they want their book to be written in idiomatic American English or do they want to retain their foreign accent? If the setting is in the U.S., do they want it to be accurate? The author from Algeria who now lives in Los Angeles had the geography in his novel down pat, but two authors who set their books in New York City but had never been there, so I was able to help them when their geography got a bit skewed. Read More
As I wrote all those term papers in college and graduate school, I made sure to insert at least one pun in every one of them. (A psychologist I’ve known for forty years attributes this punnishness to a busted synapse in my brain.) I titled one term paper, which compares the Oedipus plays of Sophocles and Hugo von Hofmannsthal,“Complex Oedipus.” Read More
But proofreading is not part of my job. Sue Jorgenson (email@example.com) and I have been friends for 20+ years, and she’s been proofreading the books I’ve edited for at least a decade. (She lives half an hour down the freeway from me.) She prints the manuscript I send her and reads it on paper.That means she sees things you and I both missed because we’re seeing what’s in our head on the computer screen. Then she brings me her marked-up copy, we have a nice visit, and I make her corrections (or nearly all of them). Read More
Goddess Meditations was published in 1998 and taken out of print in 2002 because it wasn’t selling as well as Llewellyn’s “teen witch” books. When I wrote Goddess Meditations, I was holding several intentions. First, I knew that no one had written a book composed solely and entirely of meditations to goddesses before. (There have been several since 1998.) As a spiritual feminist, I wanted to create such a book. Second, I had been leading guided meditations in rituals, small and large, private and public, for about a decade. People had liked them and kept urging me to write a book. And, third, I wanted to deal with a number of issues in my own life. So I wrote the book. And rewrote it and rewrote it and rewrote it. All that writing led me through my own issues and gave me some important healing. Read More
I like to think that I write passable poetry. I read a lot of The World’s Great Poetry in graduate school and totally understand that I’m not Shakespeare or Donne or Milton. (Not even Dryden or Shadwell.) (Joke for English majors.) Read More