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Book Editing: A Day in the Life

The edits on my book are due this Friday and I thought I’d take a second to give you a peek into my book editing process.  You may find the following schedule concerning, but don’t worry.  I am a professional.  I am two percent sure that I know what I’m doing.

7:30 – Wrangle 9-year-old to camp at the crackypants of dawn.  Understand why morning people feel morally superior to us night owls.  I really do feel better than everyone else, highly productive, and ready to destroy my work day.  Have already had two cups of dark roast and may need to rub a third directly on my face.

8:30 – Doctor appointment with seven-year-old.

10:00 – Babysitter arrives for seven-year-old and four-year-old.  Four-year-old still wearing jammies.

10:01 – Excited to have the day to myself.  I am going to crank this puppy out.

10:02 – Open manuscript on laptop and breathe.  Today is going to rock. I am going to be so productive with all these oodles of time units.

10:03 – Decide I need a planner to do a better job of scheduling and keeping track of all my new writing time.

10:04 – Open up five different tabs on planners and start reading reviews.

10:15 – Realize I’m distracted and go back to manuscript.  Highlight a line of text that I want to tweak later.

10:20 – Dog throws up on carpet.

10:30 – Back to manuscript.  Still so much time.  Notice that I’m inconsistent with “fourth-baser.”  To hyphenate or not to hyphenate?  Have quiet inner breakdown.

10:45 – Neighbor rings doorbell.  No one seems to answer it, so I race upstairs while the barfy dog barks his head off.

10:50 – Sit back down at computer.

11:00 – Realize I forgot breakfast and now I’m hungry.

11:20 – Back at manuscript.  Panic because I’ve referenced the Enterprise and Yoda in the same paragraph.  What if my fellow geeks think I’m mixing up Trek and Wars and shun me for being a moron?

11:21 – Ask Twitter about it.

11:22 – Conclude I need to spend more time with the Lord.

11:45 – That’s enough time with the Lord.  Back to manuscript.

11:57 – Love my book so completely and can’t wait to share it with everyone.

11:58 – Worry it’s total crap and want to set my laptop on fire.

11:59 – Race to bathroom for stress poo.  Can’t remember where I put those IBS meds the doctor gave me.

12:03 – Crawl back to desk.

12:13 – Child gets away from sitter and bursts through the door asking for chocolate.  I toss chocolate, accidentally hitting her in the face, and apologize, cooing “Mommy loves you” and “Shut the door.”

12:14 – Now I’m hungry again.  Pound back a Nerds Rope.

12:39 – I google who owns the rights to “The Humpy Dance.”  Need to track down licensing info for permission to use lyrics in the book.  Not the naughty ones.

12:42 – Open up six tabs hunting for Digital Underground.  Whatever happened to Humpty Hump anyway?

1:57 – Email the manager of Shock G/AKA Humpty Hump.  Force myself not to use smiley faces and exclamation points.  Sooo not cool enough to email a rapper.  Leave off the part where I’m a Christian mommy blogger who after years of being forced to listen only to Sandy Patty and Amy Grant as a child, went straight for the craziest lyrics she could find when she hit middle school.

2:04 – Back to manuscript.  The movie quotes I’m using make me laugh all over again.  I need one for the new chapter I’m adding.  Hmm…

2:53 – How long have I been on  I think I can quote the whole script of Tommy Boy.

3:30 – Wonder why I haven’t heard from Humpty Hump.  Panic I’ll never hear from him and will have to cut the very integral lyrics from my book.

3:32 – Maybe I should call him.

3:33 – Have mild heart attack at the thought of calling the manager of the guy whose lyrics talk about meeting a girl in a Burger King bathroom.

3:34 – Wonder if I should check our local Burger King to find Humpty Hump, just for permission to use his lyrics, of course.  I’m sure Beth Moore has never had to track down a rapper from the nineties for one of her books.

3:37 – Husband agrees that Humpty lyrics really are crucial to my book about mommy friends, clearly, and offers to call for me.

3:38 – Hope returns that I might get my lyrics after all, and I dive back into the manuscript.

4:01 – I realize I’m on Facebook.  I’m not sure when that happened or how long I’ve been on.  I thought I was editing, but I find myself commenting on someone’s adoption announcement.

4:02 – Back at work.  Time to make up for lost time.  I still have almost an hour.

5:15 – What.  The heck.  What just happened?  The clock jumped, I’m late to pick up nine-year-old from camp, I can’t find my shoes, and the four- and seven-year-old are asking what’s for dinner.

5:16 – Stare blankly.  Dinner?  Four-year-old still wearing jammies.

5:17 – Tell myself that tomorrow I’m really going to blow the roof off this thing.  I will be more productiver.  I will get so mucher manuscrippy.

5:18 – Decide I need a time-out from the English language.

5:20 – Wait in line at camp pick-up for forty minutes.

6:20 – Feed my family french fries that have been in the freezer since last summer.

7:00 – Bedtime shenanigans ensue.

9:00 – After a hard day’s work, feel I’ve earned two hours of Battlestar Galactica.  Find a new quote for the book.  This means I’m technically still working.  Congratulate myself for a job well done.


Note: I have contacted the music publisher about “The Humpty Dance” and will keep you informed about all breaking Humpty developments.