Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Phase 3 - Copy-Edit

(Outside my window: Another cold day. Gray skies. Snow fell during the night. My bird feeders gently move in the breeze, absent of visitors.)

Last night the copy-edit arrived in my email box. Copy-editing is what an editor does to make formatting changes and
improvements to a manuscript, such as spelling, punctuation, grammar, catching redundancies, or simplifying complicated words or phrases.

Copy-editing is to ensure that the writing flows. After a good copy-edit, the text should be tight. Then it goes back to the acquisitions editor for approval. I have a few days to read through the manuscript, and answer some of the comments in the comment boxes.

Last night, before I slipped under the down comforter exhausted from a long day, I took a quick look. My editor, Barbara Scott, is one sharp lady. There is a scene where my hero looks up into the night sky and sees the constellations of Leo and Orion. She asked me if indeed he would have seen these constellations in the month of October in the northern hemisphere. Lucky me, my husband is an amateur astronomer. Not only does he have a knowledge of space science, but he has a knowledge of Biblical astronomy, i.e. the biblical names of the constellations and their meanings. It's a fascinating topic.

Anyway, I asked him to research it for me. He showed me a star chart by the months of the year and the position of the constellations for October. One constellation that my he
ro Seth would see, while looking heavenward in the Virginia wilderness, would be Lyra, referred to in biblical times as 'The Song in the Night'. How befitting this is for my hero, as he sits against a tree, tied at wrist and ankle, in a British camp with the threat of being hung at dawn.

I call to remembrance my song in the night: I commune with mine own heart, and my spirit made diligent search. Psalm 77:6

A Lyra is a stringed instrument that originated in the Middle East.


Jessica said...

Wow, that sounds pretty cool.And how neat that your husband knows stuff like that!

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Rita -

Great catch by your editor. An inaccuracy could pull a science buff right out of the story.

One of the people who read my manuscript chided me that my book was "technologically behind the times for now much less for the year 2025." I had to re-write a few sentences to explain why things were so backward, which answered her objections.

Susan :)

Bonnie Toews said...

How fitting! And not really a coincidence is it? Just another sign of God's hand in your work. FAIL SAFE SUPPORT. As well, your hubby is remarkable for so many reasons...