Saturday, January 23, 2010


Writer: I would like you to publish my manuscript!
Editor: Well, it doesn’t work that way; it all depends on whether your manuscript is good enough that we want to publish it?
Writer: So what must I do to get published?
Editor: What’s your book about?
Writer: I can’t tell you that, I’m afraid. From my experience, the moment I tell anybody about my book, they will steal my idea. So, do you want to publish my manuscript or not?
Editor: You will have to email or sent me something before I can make a decision.
Writer: You know, I am one of those people who can’t take rejection. You must decide now!
Editor: You want me to decide on something I have no idea of?
Writer: Yes!
Editor: I can’t do that. Your work may suck big time. I can’t take that chance.
Writer: Can I come see you some time?
Editor: Nope!
Writer: What do you look for in a manuscript?
Editor: We always look for good writing?
Writer: You mean I have to use lots of bombastic words?
Editor: Good writing does not mean using big words. Spare, economical prose can be elegant. And long sentences can be clear, too. There’re many ways of writing good prose.
Writer: I need to launch my book in March 2010. Do you think you can get the book ready by then for the launch? Do you think you can assure me of good window displays at all the leading bookshops in the city? You know, I can get someone to buy 500 copies if you publish it.
Editor: Please, I have yet to see or accept your manuscript. So I can’t exactly schedule its publication and launch. Anyway, publishers, not authors, decide on launches. Furthermore, I have more than enough books to edit on my table. I can’t exactly drop them and do yours. Also, I have no idea why I am engaged in such an inane conversation as the one I’m having now. And why would anyone buy 500 copies of your book? Boil them with carrots and potatoes and make vegetable soup?
Writer: I tell you what. I will think about it and decide whether to allow you to publish it. I may just decide to publish it myself!


Blogger Lee Ee Leen said...

Your day as an editor must feel like a year!

Monday, January 25, 2010 6:55:00 AM  

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