Half Full

Normally, I’m not so much a glass half full person. Especially, when something bad has happened recently. Last week, the publishing world lost a true talent. And I (along with a lot of other people) lost a dear friend. William Neale, a fellow MLR Press author, died last week of a heart attack. I won’t dress it up in pretty words – it was a huge, painful shock. I’d spoken to him only days before. We’d planned for me to do the cover and book trailer for his next release. We hadn’t gone into details other than Bill telling me again that I don’t charge enough for the work I do. Now, I wish we had gone into some details so I’d know where to start when that book does come out, posthumously.

At any rate, last week wasn’t such a good week. And then I got edits for Runaways. Well, most authors like to say that they are in “edit hell” when they are working on edits. I’m not one of them. I look at edits as a glass half full, in direct opposition to how I usually see things. Edits are an opportunity to make my work better. I have three really amazing editors who take very good care of me and help me polish my work to the perfection that you see (at least grammatically) when you buy one of my books. Kris Jacen at MLR Press, Jillian Bell at Ellora’s Cave and Mary Wilson at Pink Petal Books are my heroes. And when they send me edits I can barely contain myself.

When I see edits in my email, it’s like Christmas morning for me. I can barely wait to open them. I usually force myself to finish whatever it is I’m doing before opening the edits but I squirm in my seat the whole time I’m finishing those tasks. I always finish my edits early, mostly because I can’t stop working on them once I have them. I LOVE edits! I love seeing how the finished product will come out. And I love hearing what my editors have to say about my work.

So despite the fact that I couldn’t focus on my edits for a couple of days after Bill died, I did get my second round edits for Runaways back to Jilly this weekend. The lure of the edits called to me even in my grief. And I imagine Bill was chuckling at me the whole time. Glass half full indeed.

Now, how about a Marcus to bring some cheer to this cold spring morning?

Oh, so handsome there in formal wear. Certainly cheers my morning right up! Have a great Monday everyone!

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10 Responses to Half Full

  1. I didn’t know Bill well, but I got to meet him at Authors After Dark last year, and he seemed like a very calm, kind man. And a very talented author.

    I agree with you about edits. Even though sometimes while I’m working on them I sit here and curse, I love doing them. I look at them as a challenge to improve the story (I like challenges as long as no one’s getting hurt), and they also mean the book is that much closer to publication.

  2. I didn’t know Bill well, but I got to meet him at Authors After Dark last year, and he seemed like a very calm, kind man. And a very talented author.

    I agree with you about edits. Even though sometimes while I’m working on them I sit here and curse, I love doing them. I look at them as a challenge to improve the story (I like challenges as long as no one’s getting hurt), and they also mean the book is that much closer to publication.

  3. kel says:

    How sad about Bill.
    He was a terrific writer.
    Your take on edits has made me feel better this morning
    as I am in “edit hell” right now. Not sure I’d go as far as
    Christmas, but better than last night.
    Cheers, Kel

  4. kel says:

    How sad about Bill.
    He was a terrific writer.
    Your take on edits has made me feel better this morning
    as I am in “edit hell” right now. Not sure I’d go as far as
    Christmas, but better than last night.
    Cheers, Kel

  5. Wow, Lex, what a tough week. So shocking. I’m sorry for your friend and his family.

  6. Wow, Lex, what a tough week. So shocking. I’m sorry for your friend and his family.

  7. I’m so sorry to hear about your fellow author. Sending good thoughts to you and his family.
    And as far as edits go? I guess it takes all kinds. LOL! Intellectually, I know the edits will make my book better, but my visceral response is a little more….irritated.
    LOL!!!

  8. I’m so sorry to hear about your fellow author. Sending good thoughts to you and his family.
    And as far as edits go? I guess it takes all kinds. LOL! Intellectually, I know the edits will make my book better, but my visceral response is a little more….irritated.
    LOL!!!

  9. Jaime Samms says:

    Bill’s death was a shock, Lex. I only met him briefly at GayRomLit last year, but he seemed a genuinely sweet, happy guy. He will be missed.

    As for edits, I’m with you on that score. I do love edits. I share your feelings about Mary. I’ve learned a great deal from her at Pink Petal, and my editors at my other publishers are equally talented. I like having those allies when it comes to making my work the best it can be for our readers.

    All my best to you, and I know you will do Bill’s last release justice. I have faith in your talents, too 🙂

  10. Jaime Samms says:

    Bill’s death was a shock, Lex. I only met him briefly at GayRomLit last year, but he seemed a genuinely sweet, happy guy. He will be missed.

    As for edits, I’m with you on that score. I do love edits. I share your feelings about Mary. I’ve learned a great deal from her at Pink Petal, and my editors at my other publishers are equally talented. I like having those allies when it comes to making my work the best it can be for our readers.

    All my best to you, and I know you will do Bill’s last release justice. I have faith in your talents, too 🙂