Monday, May 06, 2013

The flip side of getting published


A few months ago, I got a ms. of mine back from its publisher -- NOT Little, Brown. The publisher had:
  • rewritten most of the book
  • added two pages of text that contradicted the main message
  • completely changed the ending
  • changed the title

-- and all without asking the author, me.  By the time I saw the edits, the book was in pages, with all the art in place. This wasn't a work-for-hire project; it was a contracted book.

I wrote a couple of emails to the publisher, requesting changes as politely and firmly as I could; the first was ignored. They replied to the second saying they had, in an editor's words "gone as far as we can" (which wasn't very far: they changed a few words). At that point, I let it go.

EVERY author, I think, has high hopes for every book -- but sometimes, you have to just move on. Thanks partly to the wise advice of friends,  I did. I put it out of my mind and went back to the novel I'm now rewriting.

Luckily, my agent will be the one submitting this, not me.


Meghan McCarthy said...

Wow. That's interesting! I'd be FURIOUS! Really. I wouldn't stand for a MS of mine being rewritten and for me to lose control. How awful!

Libby Koponen said...

Thanks Meghan! And yes, I am mad -- disgusted maybe is a better word.

Glad you're back on the blog and love your post about B&N.