Doing the Editorial Shuffle


Goodgodbird_publicationMany of you are probably curious about the publication process and what I, as a first-time novelist, have been doing over the past few months in preparation for my debut next May. After my trip to New York, where I met my editor, Nami, and discussed the novel with her, as well as some details about how the process works overall, I got back home and waited on her notes.

A few weeks later, I received a copy of my manuscript, printed out, with liner notes and comments from Nami. My task: to read the notes and make the appropriate modifications. I will admit, I was quite nervous when I first saw my manuscript marked up—ink on nearly every page. But, once I sat down and started reading, I was so relieved and surprised to find that the approach my editor had taken to my novel was as respectful and genuinely caring as possible. In place of red ink “change this” comments, there were subtle scribblings in green ink (incidentally, my favorite color since childhood).
These “notes” on nearly every page ranged from questions to suggestions to paragraph-length compliments. I could not have been happier with the notes and the manner with which Nami approached my work. After reading her first few comments, I knew that she and I saw eye-to-eye on every aspect of the story. It was as if we’d worked together from the novel’s first inception years earlier.

It was so exciting to be able to revisit my characters and settings that I worked on and finished my first round of revisions in about three days. I sent the revisions back to her and waited again.

During this time, Nami and I also discussed these revisions, particularly the need to alter the order of the two-narratives, over the phone. Each and every time I felt uncertain about anything, we were able to talk it out. I sincerely hope every writer on earth experiences such an easy and fun a time working on revisions.

One more quick round of revisions a couple of weeks ago, which I completed in an afternoon (mind you, I work particularly fast when I’m having fun) and Nami and I agreed that the novel was in its final form.

Now, I get to wait for more excitement as I anticipate the arrival of the first composites of the tentative covers for the novel. This, in my mind, will really bring all of this to a hard-hitting reality. I can’t wait to be able to have a visual image to match with the words of my story. I have full trust that the design team is taking great care to create and image that will go perfectly with the novel. Nami and I have already discussed how we both envision the cover art, and, as you may have guessed, we agreed completely. 

I am so glad that I am able to share this exciting process with others who are as passionate about writing as I am. I wake up every morning hoping that I haven’t just had a really long dream about all of this. I’m so glad I get to share it with you all.

Happy Writing,


PS: I’m hoping to be able to reveal the official title of my novel to you all soon.

Corey Whaley hails from Shreveport, LA, where he works as an English teacher. He signed with Ken Wright, a literary agent at Writers House, last fall using WEbook's AgentInbox query service. His debut novel was purchased by Simon & Schuster early in 2010. To read more about Corey's amazing story, go here.

You Might Also Like


  1. Lyle Blake Smythers17 June 2010 at 08:20

    Elsewhere on this site you say that Ken is your agent and Nami is your editor. Is this something you want to fix in your article?

  2. Lyle,
    I've alerted the webmaster to this and we'll get it fixed soon.
    Corey Whaley

  3. Corey,
    This is all really f-ing awesome. Congratulations.

  4. Thanks! I am pinching myself daily-sometimes I wake up and go to the computer to find evidence that all of this is real. You know, just to make sure I haven't gone crazy or anything. haha.


Popular Posts

The WEbook Store