Shop Mobile More Submit  Join Login
About Deviant Senior Member Hobbling on HopeMale/Ireland Recent Activity
Deviant for 9 Years
Core Member 'til Hell freezes over
Statistics 235 Deviations 11,951 Comments 174,280 Pageviews


Flash Player 8 is required to view SitBack. Get the latest version of Flash Player.

Random Favourites


Hello, DA:

I'll be celebrating my tenth year as a professional editor soon. In this time, I've been fortunate to edit some rather lucrative commercial successes and some rather unnoticed niche novels--and a good deal of slush, slop and riot in between. I'm at a point in my career where I can pick and choose clients, pick and choose genres and form, and generally revel in the luxury of saying "No" whenever I want. It's a rather spoiled place, I won't lie, and I do enjoy it. More: I earned it.

The other day, I was speaking with a potential client, someone I've rejected a time or two before whom I didn't fancy working with this time 'round, and he asked a very simple question: "What can I read to get better at writing?"

I wanted to tell him to read anything and everything, but I knew that would be unfair. Instead, I told him what I have told each client I've accepted who's asked for similar advice. (WordCount once provided a resource list, as well.) I will now share these suggestions with you, for those few who are still listening and still writing:

1) If you are a writer and do not re-read Strunk & White every few years, most notably after you've finished a new novel's rough draft and prior to diving in for the first edit/revision sequence, you are doing yourself, your agent, and your editor a terrible disservice.

2) If you are a writer who is constantly whining about writer's block or cannot bring yourself to finish one damn thing (or hit your deadlines), then I suggest reading Stephen King's On Writing to learn a little bit more about the work that goes into the craft. Then I suggest you shut the hell up and write, because no one wants to hear your pitiful excuses. No one. A man wrote an entire novel by blinking, another through use of one goddamn foot. Suck it up, buttercup. You want to be a writer? Write.

3) If you are finding rejection at every turn and have not read Stein on Writing or employed the advice in Self-Editing for Fiction Writers (any edition), then you are at a disadvantage. These books tell you how agents and editors think--the faults only agents and editors recognize in your manuscripts that most of your readers never will--and its editors and agents you must (most-likely) move past in order to get published by someone other than Amazon's CreateSpace.

That's it. That's all. Read those four books, and you'll have read some of the best advice on producing and publishing craft currently in print. The lessons can't make up for lacking talent, but they can help hone your skill.

You're welcome.

As an aside: I am looking for two beta readers for a client who's suffering a confidence crisis (and is searching for completely fresh perspectives). The completed novel is about 110,000 words and falls into the fantasy genre with a lean towards YA. You need not like either of these genres in order to be a beta reader and, in fact, he'd welcome feedback from someone who doesn't like fantasy at all. You also need not read the entire story, as he's sufferring through the first few chapters and would appreciate reader response on these more than any other. You will not--absolutely will NOT--be responsible for any editing, be it for copy or continuity. You need only provide your general impression of what you've read and areas you deem boring, difficult to understand, or just plain awful. --Beyond this, you're free to provide any additional feedback as you see fit (including positive comments). The general turn-around for beta-read text is 30 days, sometimes less, so a quick read-through is all we require.

If you're interested, please comment below. This is not a paid position, simply an opportunity to read a traditionally-published author's work pre-publication and post-copy edits. The final form may look very different from what you read but, if and when we pass it along to the publishing side, you will receive a copy of the finished work should you so desire it.

Please note: The beta document will come as a PDF and is copyright protected with all rights reserved. Beta-readers must be above 18 and located within the continental United States.

Thank you for your consideration,


I can't believe five years have passed so quickly without you, Pip--and yet, they still seem slow when compared to the years I had with you. Wherever you are, I hope I'm making you proud.

Creidimis sa Tsíoraíocht.

Finding Pip When I Need Him:

Journal Entry: Tue Dec 16, 2014, 6:52 AM

I ache when the world does, and maybe that's a bit too much ego, and maybe that's just a little too close to cowardice, but it's the putting in rather than the putting on that makes another's shoes uncomfortable. Empathy isn't a promise to feel as another feels, to have walked as another's walked. Empathy is the understanding that I ache, and you ache, and it's the aching where we meet--rather than the road that brought us to it. I don't know your pain, and you don't know mine, but that's okay. We don't have to share an injury to acknowledge a wound.

(Recorded 11/09; Transcribed 12/14)

Peace be with those so brutally affected by violence, regardless of country or kind. May you meet with love--somewhere, somehow--this holiday season.




Hobbling on Hope
You may call me Bill or Pip. I'm a twenty-something editor, a self-professed punctuation junkie with a penchant for words, and a Catholic. I am also a very private, shy homosexual living my day-to-day between New York City and Oxford.

I like talking about sex, politics, books, relationships, religion, grammar, philosophy, literature, music, baseball and football. I have an old obsession with black and white movies and anything noir, and a true appreciation for Jimmy Stewart, Audrey Hepburn, Humphrey Bogart, Fred Astaire, and Cary Grant.

We'll probably get on well if you know who Robbe-Grillet is, enjoy Borges or Nabokov, can admit to liking Oscar Wilde, hate James Joyce and John Steinbeck, like Keats, appreciate Donne, and believe that Baldwin and Capote are among the greatest American writers in literary history.

Or, if reading isn't your thing, hit me up with a "Hello!" I welcome random IMs and notes.



Add a Comment:
LadyLincoln Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2015  Hobbyist Writer
Happy birthday, darling angel. Always thinking of you.

With love,
SRSmith Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2015   Writer
Happy one more revolution around the sun day Bill, you're still orbiting in our hearts.
Jade-Pandora Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2015
Eternally, our Birthday Boy,
dearest Pip
Lake on Autumn by KmyGraphic
LorrieWhittington Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2015  Professional Traditional Artist
Happy birthday Bill, thinking of you today. xxx
T0NY0 Featured By Owner Sep 29, 2015  Student Writer
Just wanted to pop by and express my gratitude that this account is still up and that Pip's writings are still accessible. "Bad Poetry" touched me very deeply when I first read it, and I find myself returning to it several times a year for the comfort it offers me. Good writing, as they say, lives on. A little cheesy, perhaps, as cliches go, but it's that very sentiment that keeps me hopeful.
TheGlome Featured By Owner Jul 7, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
i thought of you today, my friend. you are loved, and missed. 
Memnalar Featured By Owner Jun 26, 2015
Quite a day today. Thinking about you.
silber-englein Featured By Owner May 8, 2015   Photographer
Serrara Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
You will never be forgotten, Sir Hype. :iconsaluteplz:
gvardianangel Featured By Owner Feb 26, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Add a Comment: