Comments on "Underpopulated" - Faerye Net 2011-03-17T12:21:26+00:00 Re: editors 2011-03-17T12:21:26+00:00 2011-03-17T12:21:26+00:00 <p>FYI, Jan, I have read your comment and am now percolating more bloggery as a result. Hence my lack of thoughtful comment-reply! :P</p> Felicity editors 2011-03-12T13:44:29+00:00 2011-03-12T13:44:29+00:00 <p>I love this!</p> <p>I once paid an editor to review a novel I was working on. We met over tea and it soon became clear that a) she hadn’t read my ms, and b) she didn’t care what I was trying to do. She advised what authors are commonly told to do—or were—and that was to cut out characters. I had a mother with two daughters. Why not only have one daughter, she said.</p> <p>I could have explained that the relationships between daughters and mothers was central to the story, but instead I wrote her a check, fled, and stashed her page of notes unread.</p> <p>I blamed myself at the time. It was a “young” novel and probably awful, but what was wrong with it would not have been fixed by cutting characters. Most of us live well-populated lives. Too many characters live lives between the covers without neighbors, parents, co-workers, and pets. They do not bump into people they used to know or fret about how to avoid the neighborhood block party.</p> <p>That’s where I should stop before this becomes a full-fledged rant about the lack of occupation in most stories.</p> Jan Priddy