The Husk Chronicles, Episode Two – Waiting for plastic surgery

Before

No, I am not getting lipo, but thanks so much for going there first.Editing a book

No, what I’m waiting for is my next edit. Currently, I’m in standby mode until the copy edit of Husk arrives.This is the edit between the substantive edit — when your editor tells you that you are a genius, but you’d be even more of a genius if you’d only change the gender of your protagonist, and set the story in the old west instead of the planet Reticulope — and the proofread edit — where you suddenly forget how to spell every single word in the English language.

So, I eagerly await the next phase, copy edit. Then, to work! Fixing all the little details, changing certain words, adding/deleting phrases, excising, cutting, slicing, dicing, and all in all mangling up what was once a perfectly presentable manuscript.

In medical procedure terms, this is known as plastic surgery time. To continue the analogy, my initial manuscript was both birth and elementary school, substantive edit is puberty and maturation, and copy edit is that special time in every young boy/girl’s life when s/he realizes that genetics can only take you so far. So, under the knife you go! Nip, tuck, replace, suck out here, inject in there. Proofreading then becomes the cosmetic patch-up jobs on crow’s-feet and male pattern baldness. Spray hair in a can, your day will come!

(By the way, I was going to put in a photo example of plastic surgery gone awry to illustrate my point, but a quick google image search for “bad plastic surgery” made me feel so bad I just couldn’t do it.)

Will Husk need plastic surgery? Most definitely, like Mickey Rourke after a boxing match. Much of it will be trimming of the fat (i.e. I go on way too long, giving Husk a bit of a muffin top), but some will be reconstructive. There’s a sub-plot or two that need fleshing out (lip injections), and there’s always a need to add a new descriptive phrase or two (hair implants).

And then, soon enough, the surgery will be over, and Husk will be transformed from this:

Before

to this:

MochaMuch better. Although the original still has its charms.