Sunday, December 2, 2007

The Mysterious F.L.E.: In Praise of the Final Line Editor

You already know how fascinated I am by the whole editing process. Perhaps if I am published several more times, I will become jaded enough to complain about it, but, for now, it's super neat-o cool. My editor Laurie has been great about explaining the process, the schedule, and all that. She's fabu to work with, besides. (You should check out her blog.)

But today, I'm going to write about a far more mysterious person, the FLE. I got the Final Line Editor's revisions on Like a Thief in the Night this week. Wow. She caught mistakes I've missed again and again. Little things that would totally jump out and annoy a reader, like mentioning "bullets" when only one shot is fired. And big things like an anatomical inconsistency in a love scene that I am totally embarrassed to have missed.

On a side note: I always wondered how authors could make such mistakes in love scenes, and now I know: Cut & Paste. The love scene mistake the FLE caught was not the result of me not knowing how everything fits together, but the result of a previous version of the same scene that had the characters positioned in different locations relative to each other. I thought I was being economical by not rewriting the entire scene when I decided it should run differently. I guess now, as a reader, I will have to be a little more forgiving of those sorts of mistakes.

Anyway, FLE, you eagle-eyed woman of mystery--I salute you. :o)