Months ago, Laura Anne and I started this regular blog to discuss the process of putting together an anthology of original material in a shared world of the Steampunk kind.
I am happy to report that “Shadow Conspiracy: Tales From the Age of Steam” will be sent into production this weekend.
Our jobs as editors will be done at that point and so will this regular blog feature.
Both of us are suffering mightily from tired brain syndrome. My dreams are filled with a world of fashion conscious adventurers and fabulous steaming, animated machines. (so far we have a dragon, a Pegasus, an elephant, and a bunch more) I can almost taste the sulphur. No that is not a misspelling. I’ve set MS Word to UK English to ease the editing process. We decided that a Victorian age piece of literature, set mostly in England, and populated mostly with English characters should reflect their language. I’ve begun to think of UK English as a foreign language. How else do I remember when to use double ls as in travelled. Cozy has become cosy, sceptical favours the c over the k, and numerous other variations beyond the usual honour and centre. (The funny thing is, before I started taking my writing seriously and marketing to US publishers, I spelled this way and got my wrist slapped by teachers and critique partners for not knowing proper English.)
Adding to the sense of total immersion into this world, I need to hold the entire book in my head as I edit. How else can I catch inconsistencies? Does Lady A have children or not? Are agent Fraser’s eyes dark or crystal blue? Is Madame M truly the bastard daughter of a Gypsy King, or just another Teutonic nurserymaid? I have to know all of these factoids and keep them straight.
The one thing I cannot quite retire is my spreadsheet, keeping track of where each manuscript is in the process: when it was sent to Laura Anne, how long the author has had to revise it, which copy editor is working on it, etc. etc. I have one more column. Sending it to production and getting page proofs back and approved. But that’s still a couple of weeks away. Hopefully I can turn off the Shadow Conspiracy part of my brain for a while.
Come Sunday morning the Master Document becomes Igor’s, aka Steven Pizics’, baby and he can stay up all night coaxing the crank infant into cooperating.
It’s been fun folks, more fun than I can remember having in a writing experience. So you can bet I’ll be back next year with Volume II. After I’ve had a good long nap and a cup of Earl Grey,hot.