monique polak

Monique Polak's Books

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Today I Bring You Tips From a Children's Books' Editor

Gee, I really had to slow down to get those apostrophes right in the title of today's blog entry! So, today  I'd like to introduce you to Faye Smailes, YA editor at James Lorimer & Co., in Toronto. When I was at the OLA conference, Faye and I arranged to meet up (several of my books including On the Game and Scarred are published by Lorimer). Faye has been workingas an editor at Lorimer for about 18 months, but Faye is also a writer. She did her MA in Creative Writing at Concordia University here in Montreal, and she has a special interest in poetry and video-poetry. Because Faye has experience both as a writer and editor, I knew she'd have some good tips for the aspiring writers who read my blog. Here's what she told me: "A lot of authors' biggest problem is their own insecurity. Many of them self-edit too much, especially at the beginning. They need to put it out there; they need to give me something." Now that doesn't mean the minute you write something you should hand it in to me (if you're in my class), or submit it to Faye (if you're hoping to get published)... because you've got to rewrite and rewrite and rewrite several more times after that before your piece is good to go. But I think Faye is absolutely right, especially when it comes to first drafts -- try not to "self-edit" as Faye puts it; just get your darned story out. There'll be lots of time to perfect it later....

Speaking of which -- I'm working on the edit of my George River book. So far so good! My editor on this project, Sarah Harvey at Orca, thinks the book is in pretty good shape. PHEW!!! Still, I've got several weeks of work ahead on the rewrite ... going to go for a chilly run (minus 20 today in Montreal) and then I'm going to do as much rewriting as I can before I turn back into a teacher. Have a good day wherever you are. And don't forget: Put your story out there!!

P.S.: Check out the picture of Faye and me in Toronto last week.

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Comments

Guest - tamar on Thursday, 05 February 2009 12:56

I like how you now add picture to your blog! It adds an extra oomph.

I like how you now add picture to your blog! It adds an extra oomph. :D
Guest - Monique on Thursday, 05 February 2009 20:36

And thanks for being such a faithful blog reader, Tamar!

And thanks for being such a faithful blog reader, Tamar!
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