Wednesday, September 8, 2010

The truth about editors

I get an email from an editor. A book editor. She's seen The War Project. Her email says, congratulations on this amazing project. The "C" isn't capitalized, I note. Do you have a book deal? she inquires. She signs her name, so I google her name. Most of the stuff written about her is on Gawker. A series of posts describe her as shouty, or troubled, or troublesome, and there's one from someone who used to work for her that says the only time the editor was nice to her was when she was maybe drinking or something. She is best known for editing a best selling book by a former vice president. I email her back because it's an average day, and what else is there to do? I don't really like editors, or agents, but I do it anyway, knowing I will eventually regret doing so, but a) who knows when and b) I can blog it. I don't have a book deal, I write back. She wants to know where I live, so I tell her. I would love to discuss this with you, she writes. Because this is how agents and editors are. They would love to do things, and they think things are absolute amazing, and they all write with this sort of breathless anticipation like all their internal clocks are ringing the alarm on This Should've Been Done Yesterday. I send her my phone number and tell her when to call, but she never calls. Several weeks later, I get bored, and I send her an email. Are you still interested in this? I say. Her email says, absolutely. The "A" isn't capitalized, I note. She asks me if I can talk on the phone the next day. I don't respond right away, because I'm tired -- of editors, of agents, of phones. The next day, she writes, did you get my response? She sounds breathless with anticipation. would love to talk sometime tomorrow. I send her my phone number. She never calls. I wonder what she's doing. If she's out partying, or super busy, or if she ever gets sad. I wonder if she's lonely, if the ex-vice president calls her in the middle of the night and tells her that he misses her, that if she would let him, he would be her crazed sex poodle forever.