I was wondering. How differently do you edit the various authors/illustrators you work with? Does the author's workstyle and personality enter into how you edit them? Do you look for changes in roundabout ways? ...or are you very direct? Do you ever suggest a book idea to an author?
Let's see. Although I do have a general way/style I usually edit, I would say that I do adjust my editing style depending on the author's or illustrator's work styles and personalities. For example, during much of the editing process with Libby on Blow Out the Moon, we felt comfortable enough to go over edits over the phone. I knew that Libby would not get defensive, or if she did, that she would be able to put it aside for a little while. But so far no other author has preferred to work with like this, so generally I do the standard editorial letter and edits directly on the manuscript that I discussed in my "How I Edit" post.
I think I'm pretty direct when I ask for changes, but I will very rarely say anything like, "reword it this way." Instead, I'll just comment if something is awkward or needs rewording and have the author come up with the solution. I may offer some suggestions for alternate solutions to plot or believability issues, however. Overall, I think I have a fairly light touch when I edit. Is this roundabout? I'm not sure.
And finally, do I ever suggest book ideas to authors? I'm sure I've thrown out ideas to authors before, but usually not ones that are entirely originally, instead, I think I've thrown out ideas on different ways to approach an idea they've already had themselves.
On Saturday I went to Comic Con for the first time. I was scheduled to work at my company's booth from 12:30 to 2, which basically entailed telling people about the three of our Fall 2007 middle grade and young adult ARCs we were giving away (the rest of the books we were giving away were on the adult side), Betwixt, Atherton, and the third book in James Patterson's Maximum Ride series. Then, at 1 pm Patrick McDonnell (creator of the Mutts comic strip and author/illustrator of Gift of Nothing, Art, Just Like Heaven, and the upcoming Hug Time) signed posters for an hour. It was great to see all of his fans, including many children. Everyone was so nice and friendly and excited. I loved this girl with her cat hat.
I walked the show for an hour or so after the signing, running into at one point Fuse #8, and we chatted for a while, both a bit dazed and confused. I was so tired and overwhelmed at that point, too much to see. A lot of people were dressed up, but it wasn't quite as crazy as I thought it would be, although some of the costumes were amazing. At 4 pm I went to Cecil Castelluci and Jim Rugg's signing at the DC Comics booth of The Plain Janes, said hello to agent Barry Goldblatt, and then escaped the madness. Here are some pics: