Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Karen Russell, on working with editors

KAREN RUSSELL, the author of Vampires in the Lemon Grove, Swamplandia! and St Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves, says: “I think my favorite thing in the world is working with magazine editors or book editors, because I think a lot of work gets done at that stage, when something becomes so much better or clearer. It’s a joy to be in collaboration with another mind, who can sort of vet the choices that you’re making and tell you what doesn’t belong or what’s getting in the way. A huge thing for me is, knowing what to make more explicit, and where you can have productive ambiguity. It’s so wonderful to have someone to kind of mirror back how the story’s reading, and to give you an outside view of the questions that belong inside the story that you should not answer, the mystery that you want to leave humming in the story and then the questions that really do need to be answered. For me, structure is always a challenge, so that’s frequently a huge help to me—to have an editor who’s unafraid to take a machete to the draft I’ve sent, and really reorder things. That’s the heroism of the editor.”


Post a Comment

<< Home