Interview: A New Author’s Writerly Perspective

So, it’s time for an interview with a first-time author, and who better to choose than my first-time writer friend, Heather Reed.

TERESCIA: You’re a soon-to-be published author, and I know that because you’re also my closest friend. I doubt I can be objective where my friend, business partner (WWR), and critique partner is concerned. Ah, well. We’ll pretend.

Anyway, I know you recently went through your first revisions for an editor. Was it as scary as you imagined it would be to make changes to your book based on someone else’s wishes?

HEATHER: Scary really doesn’t describe what it was like. At first, I looked at the revision letter and thought, “How am I going to change that?” But by the end of the revisions I couldn’t have been happier. All of the changes made the story stronger and I learned a lot about myself and my writing abilities.

Of course, it also helped that the editor I worked with at the time was really great. She answered all my questions and helped me work through whether or not some of the changes really needed to be made. All in all when the process was over I was pleased with the end result.

TERESCIA: Did you have trouble giving over control?

HEATHER: I won’t lie. Giving up control over your work is hard. But if you want to be published (and not have a reputation with the editors as someone hard to work with), you have to be somewhat flexible. I did find that on some issues it’s okay to stand your ground, though. My editor listened to my questions and concerns over some of the changes and in the end it worked out well.

TERESCIA: When it comes to revisions, what’s the number one thing you would pass on to an unpublished writer (like myself)?

HEATHER: Don’t go in with unreasonable expectations. If you go into the process thinking you aren’t going to change this or that, you may find that’s exactly what the editor wants you to change. And remember that some things aren’t worth fussing over. Life’s too short and there’s another book to be written.

TERESCIA: Your book comes out in Au