Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Misfortune Cookie gets a makeover

Buff, polish, brush, snip ... Misfortune cookie is at the spa. The editorial spa that is, where editor extraordinaire Lucy is whipping her into shape, in the nicest possible way, I'm sure. 

There's a lot of discussion in the blogosphere about whether writers should spend the money for a professional copy-editor. After all, don't we read it a million times to ensure every word is perfect? Well, yes we do. And it's because we read it a million times that a copy-editor is so necessary.

As a writer I'm way too close to the manuscript to see simple errors. Apparently it has something to do with the way brains process the written word - they're very good at filling in blanks or ignoring duplicate information. And even though my agent also does two full edits, still we miss things. That's where Lucy comes in, and why she's an invaluable part of the writing team. 

I learned the value of a good editor when I published Single in the City with Penguin. Then, I had a copy-editor and my commissioning editor to make the book perfect. Well, nearly perfect. Because even professionally edited and traditionally published books have errors. I found four or five in Single in the City. But I live in hope that Misfortune Cookie will be perfect.

So do your worst (best) Lucy, Misfortune Cookie can take it!


  1. Ooooh! Exciting to be so far in the process!

  2. Hi Michele,
    I too am considering self-publishing. I've got a novel ready to go and a non-fiction project well underway, not to mention a blog to hold them together. Thanks for sharing your insights.

  3. Thanks Andrew, best of luck with your book!

  4. Well there be a sequel following ”Misfortune cookie”?


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