I love getting the first clean, fresh, pages, back from Allen and Unwin – it looks like a book and is ready to read. It’s like starting again and seeing the book through fresh eyes.
This edit was particularly difficult for me. We were going flat chat with harvest and I had a deadline to have the edit finished by… deadlines and harvest just don’t work.
I spent hours sitting in the tractor, waiting for Anthony to call me over to the header and take a load of grain away from him! It was frustrating when I spent time sitting, waiting, not doing very much, when I had Blue Skies hanging over my head. Then I decided to take the manuscript with me and see if I could read through it while I was waiting! Well, that was an interesting experience!
When I’m driving the chaser bin, I often take a book – there is always time to read – it doesn’t matter if you read the same sentence twice or skip a page – it doesn’t effect your work. Editing a MS does! I don’t know how many times, after getting so caught up in what I was doing, that I didn’t see the signal (auger out from the header), to take a load of grain back to the silos. There were a few terse calls on the two-way, asking if I was intending to help that day!
By the end, there were lots of dirty finger prints all over the MS and a couple of pages that had water spilt on them, when the kids jumped in the tractor for their daily ride. But more to the point, there was lots of green marks that indicated the changes I was making… it was slowly getting done.
It was then a process of transferring everything I’d changed onto an email and sending it back to my editor. I made the deadline and we finished harvest… I’m not sure I want to try doing both of them at the same time, ever, again!