Monday, September 26, 2011

EDITING = heart-surgery.

MAXMOM here...
(My editor's beautiful cat....CLEOPATRA)

It's been a really full weekend. 
As they say, "No rest for the wicked.!"


Our attempt to find Salvio a home has networked his plight to hundreds of concerned readers around South Africa.  I am really grateful to those who have helped get the word out about this beautiful dog. 
 As I write this, Salvio still hasn't found his forever home. (Yet!)
Please, if you haven't read his story, please scroll down to the previous blogpost.

If you can, and if you are in South Africa, please would you open up your heart to help this special dog.  I would love to see this happen.   In the meantime, I pray that something will come up and that he will be able to find a home.


(One of my editor's dogs...also named TOBY!)

It has been said that the difference between a good editor and a bad editor is crystal clear: 
 A good editor won't try and put Band-aid on the wounds of your manuscript. 
Instead, he/she will engage in full blown heart-surgery! 
MAXDOG has a good editor!

Saturday afternoon was the first time that I met with MAXDOG's editor Joan.  I was really nervous - as all authors presumably are on their first meeting - but it was really unnecessary.  Our time together was candid, professional, intense and enriching. 

As many of you know, MAXDOG is an intensely personal story and has required that I revisit some excrutiatingly painful memories.  I have spent nearly two years on the manuscript and, as time has progressed, it has become increasingly harder for me to keep looking for any flaws in the story.  My defence mechanisms constantly challenge my desire to turn this story into a masterpiece. 

 Since I am one of the main characters in the book, and since it is a true story, I have to open up my heart and soul to places I never dreamt about.  Constant instrospection is extremely difficult, particularly if you have to get to grips with your own 'character'.  It's even more difficult if you have to search for your own, personal cracks and confront your 'not-so-nice' self.

Well, why do I do it?  What is the purpose of sharing so much personal stuff?

My reasons are four-fold:

* I want to bring tribute to this amazing dog who touched my life so deeply.
* I want to show that there is, indeed,  hope for people who suffer from depression.
* I want to pay tribute to the amazing cyber-support-community of dog and cat-bloggers around the world
* I want to give voice to the incredibly powerful bond which can develop between human beings and their animal companions.

In order to truly accomplish these goals, I have to look deep inside my own personality and be totally forthcoming with what I find.  It's been really difficult.

So this past weekend, I spent my time adding further dimension to the first three chapters of MAXDOG.  I think the narrative is looking rich and engaging.  I hope my editor likes it too. 

I am so grateful for Joan's help.  She is simply amazing.  Her gentleness, and candid discernment, enables me to see MAXDOG from a reader's perspective - a skill that I have so desperately needed.

Thank you Joan, for agreeing to take this project on. Thank you for helping me to make MAXDOG a masterpiece!  I am so grateful for your special talent and to be working with you.


Joan has graciously allowed me to share a short video clip of one of her four animal companions.  The fact that she is also an animal lover, as well as my editor, is not lost on me...It's yet another blessing.

MAXDOG...we are nearly there!
only 9 weeks to go!!!
"Wherever MAXDOG goes, let it do good!"
Sending lotsaluv


Curt Rogers said...

I think few people truly understand what a slow and excruciating process writing can be. But MaxDogs will see you through, as he has so many other things. Be patient with yourself, remove your ego from your work, trust your editor and always remember the higher goal.

I have faith, Carol.

My Dog Sam - Ruptured Disk said...

Hi Maxmom, my dad writes advertising and stuff and he understands how difficult it can be sometimes to have someone comment on your work. But your work will be deeper and more insightful with a good editor. Best wishes on this leg of your journey.

Anonymous said...

Wooo Hooo Mom and I just LOVE the cover of your book! It looks Pawsome! I just know that Max is thrilled!

woos, Tessa

Boondocks Love Shack Pack said...

WE CANNOT WAIT TO READ IT!! Is it December yet????

Boondocks & The Love Shack Pack

24 Paws of Love said...

So many things I can relate to. Writing, opening oneself up, and having a heart dog that soaks up the wounds.

Your words are powerful. I feel them without even to have to read a single word.

Heart dogs are powerful.

Mrs. JP said...

I LOVE the cover of MAXDOG. I didn't know you were still editing!!! What a painful and growing process that must be. I'm glad for your good and talented editor.

STELLA and RORY from Down Under said...

I just can't wait to read your book. You must be nervous of course, but wow, an author. How wonderful. No worries (for sure) and love, Carol (and Stella and Rory)

sprinkles said...

I really need to email you for info on how to get that book!

Anonymous said...


Love the video as well.. hehe..


Frankie Furter and Ernie said...

I remember what an editor once told me, "I am you BEST Friend.
As such, I will tell you the things that you don't want to hear, but need to know. Please allow me to help you say what you really want to say in a way that others will understand."
But it still stings a bit.
I know the book will be a complete success.

Dexter said...

Ouch! That has to be difficult to be simultaneously reading and rereading and chopping and pasting your labor of two years AND revisiting painful memories. Hang in there.

The video was wonderful.

Mango Momma

Tweedles -- that's me said...

Dear Maxmom
Your honesty is what touches me.
It is what I relate to.
The pain, and the journey.
I want so much to read about the hope and the miracle.
I know this book is ment for me to read

Scout and Freyja said...

Lotsa information but gotta say - l♥ve that kitty!

Bouncing Bertie said...

Just wondering how much Abigail weighs (and eats)!