Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Editing Advice from Cheryl Klein

Today's forecast for St. Peters, MO: Mostly cloudy, high 50 degrees. It was gorgeous out this morning when I drove Michael and some classmates to the library for a field trip. (They're doing reports on famous women for women's history week. His pick--Amelia Earhart.)

In 2006, at the Missouri Writers' Guild Conference in Kansas City, I attended a presentation by editor Cheryl Klein . Cheryl is a Missouri gal working in New York at Arthur A. Levine Books, a division of Scholastic, Inc. Cheryl is continuity editor for the U.S. editions of Harry Poter books. Yes, that Harry Potter!

Her talk in Kansas City about the essentials of plot was inspired--and inspiring. As I listened to her talk, I scribbled notes, even though she told us her notes would be available on line, and I sat in awe at her wisdom and generosity. Since the conference, I have visited her website frequently and am never disappointed with the information she has posted there. I highly recommend writers of any genre to visit her website--often. The website is a gold mine of writing, editing and publishing information. Especially helpful are the verbatim texts of conference presentations she has made around the country.

Because I'm writing a young adult novel, I'm particularly interested in what Cheryl has to say about editing. Here's a link to her post on “The Art of Detection: One Editor’s Tips for Analyzing and Revising Your Novel.”

I was excited to learn Cheryl will be in Missouri next month at the SCWBI novelists' retreat. Although my schedule won't permit me to attend the retreat, I hope to find out what she spoke about by visiting her website after the event. If you get a chance, check out her website. I promise--you will be glad you did.

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