I have some bad news about Free Comic Book Day. Due to an illness in the family I will have to cancel my appearance this weekend at Collectors Corner. My mom is on life-support and tomorrow they are taking her off. I apologize to Randy and anyone this will inconvenience. I wish I could be there with you guys but under the circumstances I think it’s best for me to stay close to home.
Over the years I've gotten lazy about editing. I've always relied on the fact that I've had great editors who would catch most errors or challenge weak plot points. Those days are all but gone it seems. I have maybe one or two real editors now. The rest are just trafficking projects. I almost never read my books once printed but I picked one up recently and my hair stood on end. Basically my rough draft had been published. It was horrible. Mistake after mistake and not one note about any of it from my editor. Not one.
That's fine. It's my fault. I got lazy. I wasn't looking.
Because of this I have made two major changes. One, I proofread the hell out of everything and I DO NOT rely of Spell Check or anything automated (that's what made me lazy in the first place).
I have also brought on a couple freelance editors to call me out when I screw up. A good editor isn't just a spell checker. I good editor helps shape the story and make sure the final product is up to snuff. Seems those days are long gone. I am lucky to have the editors I do have. Those books are consistently better reviewed.
Most of this is just more adapting to this brave new world we are stumbling into blindfolded and gagged. I don't fault the publishers who don't hire editors (and there are more every day). I blame myself for allowing some mistake-riddled books get published and I'm saying it won't happen again.
Anyway, I miss editors.
Added: Guys. I'm not trashing any specific publisher at all so please stop writing my editors and trying to stir things up. Are we all Bleeding Cool now? I have just noticed more errors in all media, not just my own. I catch errors all day long online and even in new books. It's not about good publishers or bad publishers. It's about people giving into technology too much and too soon. It would be great if the push of a button did what a human editor can do but it can't and that's all I was saying. I have longterm relationships with my editors at IDW and Dark Horse. I love these people and they help make the comics readable. So please, this was not a trash session. Just wanted to discuss something I've noticed. Thanks.
Added: I am all covered on proofreaders and I have two freelance editors now I can use. Really what I was commenting on is the disappearing editor in all forms of media. It's a disturbing trend where something that shouldn't be phased out is being phased out and I think work is suffering for it.
Added: And to clarify, I still have some great editors that I have worked with for a long time at companies like IDW and Dark Horse; editors who make notes and challenge story. This is just something that's disappearing and I'm not sure why. Like newspapers firing photographers and giving reporters iphone training, it just seems like we are giving in to technology a bit too soon.
Sexual harassment has become a thing in comics. It's a thing everywhere but with the invasion of the mainstream things are getting worse. I've been quiet about a lot of it honestly because I'm very disappointed we are having to deal with this in this day and age. But the problem is there and we need to talk about it.
One of the best things we can do for women in comics is have their backs. I'm talking to you men types. Have women's backs in comics like you would your mother, sister or wife or daughter. Call out men who harass women, talk to them, ask them what the hell they are doing. If you know someone making threats online, call them out. To much cowardice going on online and the one way to make it stop is to track them down and expose them.
I can't believe I even have to say this but we are all equal and we all deserve a place at the table. Instead of being the dick pulling the chair away stand up, be a man and open your arms. Women are and have been a big part of comics, horror and fandom and growing everyday. Let's embrace it.
There’s so much more to this but ending it starts with conversation.