The Fear Inside

Ha! you saw what I did there right? The Hunger Inside..The Fear Inside.. yeah.

Well, tomorrow morning I get to open up the recommendations of my second editor for The Hunger Inside.

Now this is not as easy as it would be to someone else who was putting out their first work. This is not actually my first work. I also did a piece of work a long time ago that came pretty close to publication. After submitting it to a publisher (and authorizing changes to it before publication) I received a pre publication copy only to find to my absolute and abject horror that my main character had been drastically rewritten into a bumbling, idiotic, blonde, bimbo. Apparently the editor was reforming people’s stories in order to take advantage of a market niche that they thought was more important than the one that I had actually written for.

It was so bad that I paid the forfeiture fee to make sure it would not be produced and I burned the original. It never has, and never will, hit production. It hurt. Very badly. I will never trust a major publisher again.

Whenever I open an email from someone who has reviewed my work, I get a tightness in my chest. The back of my throat gets a sour taste and my heart pounds. I have delayed opening this editors email for a few days now. The editor himself is a good person, and he has already told me that he does like the story. I don’t have any reason to expect anything more than normal suggestions to make sure that the story is tight and the characters believable. That it has a beginning and an end that will make people want to read it and tell others to read it too. My problem is not with the editor, it's with me and my own fear.

It’s not the first book I have written, but even though I am well published (for short stories), this is the first item I have ever really felt was important to really get out there in the market. Important enough to hire an editor out of my own pocket and not risk another effort by a big publisher to wreck my dreams.  

So tomorrow with trembling hands I’ll open that email and consider each point of recommendation with a cool reflection on exactly what this character needs, to make you laugh, and cry, and throw things at my head.