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singing the praises of my editors - KRAD's Inaccurate Guide to Life
ramblings from a mad fedora'd writer
singing the praises of my editors
I was going over the manuscript of Stargate SG-1: Kali's Wrath and I found myself once again delighted with the quality of work done by the editors I've had the privilege of working with over the years.

While almost all the editors I've worked with have been absolutely wonderful (in fact, there are only three who I wouldn't classify with that label), there are a few who've stood out in particular over the 22 years I've been writing fiction:

Sally Malcolm, the person who prompted this entry for her insightful work and excellent knowledge of the Stargate characters. She also has proven incredibly deft at navigating the various pitfalls of doing licensed work, as she is good at guiding us writers toward what will work best with MGM.

Al Guthrie, who edited my Heroes Reborn novella, and who is currently editing my SCPD novella, and who is a pleasure and a joy to work with.

John Ordover was my first Star Trek prose editor, and it was under his guidance that I did some wonderful Trek work, plus it was thanks to him that I got to work on the Starfleet Corps of Engineers eBook series. John is one of the best idea generators in the universe, and getting to work with his fertile story mind was always great fun.

Jonathan Maberry is a big fan of my writing, which is very flattering coming from someone as talented at writing as he, and he's brought me in on several anthology projects of his, from V-Wars to Out of Tune to Nights of the Living Dead to The X-Files, and a Maberry project is always a delight.

One of the most aggressively talented editors I've ever worked with is John Betancourt. I learned more about editing just by being his assistant for a year in 1993/94 than I did in the entire rest of my life combined.

Laura Anne Gilman was my editor on only one project ("Down to the Waterline" for Buzzy Mag), but I also got to work with her as co-editor on the first book with my name on the cover, OtherWere: Stories of Transformation, an anthology of alternate were-creature stories. Laura Anne is expert at taking what's there and making it better, which is an editor's primary job.

Deborah Grabien had superb notes that made several of the stories in Ragnarok and Roll a ton better than they might have been otherwise.

Both Matt Gagnon and Ian Brill and BOOM! Studios are spectacular and insightful editors. While the latter was my primary editor for most of my time doing Farscape comics, I must also sing Matt's praises both for the work he did editing the first Farscape miniseries, but also for his notes on a Cassie Zukav comics proposal that he wound up rejecting, but he made one note that brought the entire milieu into focus and made it sing in a way I never would have thought of without his goosing.

Greg Cox, who gave me the assignment that changed my life, Gargantua, a crash movie novelization gig that convinced me that I could do this tie-in writing thing for a living.

Last, but the exact opposite of least, is Marco Palmieri, my editor for many of my Trek works. It's not a coincidence that the two novels I consider my best -- The Art of the Impossible and Articles of the Federation -- were both edited by Marco. He is as good or better than anyone at taking a story and finding a way to make it sing in ways you never knew possible. His story instincts are as good as anyone's, and he knows how to work within writers' strengths and shore up their weaknesses. I'm incredibly pleased to see him thrive at Tor Books after Simon & Schuster laid him off after the crash of '08, and I hope that some day we can work together again.

In 22 years, I've worked with a ton of editors, and they've virtaully all been amazing. The best editing is totally invisible, of course, so it's very easy to overlook the work that all these people have done to make my work better.

So everyone raise your glasses to my fine editors! :)

Current Mood: thoughtful thoughtful
Current Music: the Yankees-Blue Jays game on YES

5 comments or Please comment
woofiegrrl From: woofiegrrl Date: April 14th, 2016 12:21 am (UTC) (Link)
as she is good and at guiding us writers toward what will work best

*whistles innocently*
kradical From: kradical Date: April 14th, 2016 12:31 am (UTC) (Link)

(It's now fixed....)
vulpine137 From: vulpine137 Date: April 14th, 2016 12:35 am (UTC) (Link)
*laughs out loud*
vulpine137 From: vulpine137 Date: April 14th, 2016 12:35 am (UTC) (Link)
Editors, the hardest working people in publishing. And without them, it's adness, utter and complete adness. ;)
From: lizkayl Date: April 14th, 2016 02:54 am (UTC) (Link)
Yay for people who try to bring out the best and raise you up.
5 comments or Please comment