Hi Everyone: Zounds it's Friday and I've not done my blog yet. Had a crummy night last night, was up until 1:30 AM -- stuffy nose, blowing, sneezing. Nothing serious, just uncomfortable and unable to sleep. But back to quotes... I have several favorites and here's another one: "A manuscript, like a foetus, is never improved by showing it to somebody before it is completed." Unknown
I don't know who unknown was, but they were right on the mark. For me, my story line is a nebulous blob out there and having someone poking at it only disrupts my initial ideas. I once submitted a synopsis -- hate them -- and I ran into what I call 'petrie dish editing'. Now the story wasn't clear in my mind, but this editor started complaining about an element of the story. In this case, I think it was something to do with an Indian Chief named, Corn Stalker. I hadn't planned for his role to be major, at least I don't think so, but Corn Stalker was involved in some interesting things back then (if memory serves) and I wanted to incorporate them into my story or at least mention them in passing. Well, of course after the editor put in her two bits worth, I abandoned that part of the story, but I've always wondered what shape that book would have taken and if it wouldn't have been a better book with more historical fact in it if the editor hadn't done her petrie dish editing. She had no idea how I would use the material, no idea where it would lead, or how it might enhance the story, but immediately objected to it. I'll confess I didn't know precisely how I would use Corn Stalker either but she certainly put paid to that idea before it was even fully formed. And of course, that's one of the reasons I hate submitting a synopsis -- I haven't a clue in hell where I'm going with a story -- just a hazy outline and, in this case, I changed my hazy outline before I even knew what it was. Might have been some great stuff. Oh, well, it happened years ago, but I still wonder about the book I would have written except for...petrie dish editing.