January 2019: Edits From Hell


Do you feel like something is missing? As if an inexplicable void, a terrible nothingness, has taken root where formerly resided the pith of your pithy spirit? Roughly 4-6 of you might have been wondering, over the past month or so, where my explosive blog has gone. Fear not, my feary friends. I’m still here.


January: the coldest month of the year (but not the snowiest!). What better time to hole up and temporarily die? A friend of mine, Jared Hauser, once told me that his brother sees winter as a time to crumple up your drafts and toss them into the fire, all the while pounding rot-gut rye with sad jazz on heavy rotation.

With my novel due out in September, I was tasked with a final round of developmental edits — i.e. one last big-picture revision before the dreaded line edit. Thus there was no time to crumple and set ablaze. That being said, here are the January stats:

Average hours of sleep per night: ~5
Average number of hours spent editing per night: ~5
Words edited: ~120,000
Friends lost: All of them? Hello?
Net brain cell gain/loss: a few million/billion give or take
Quantitative improvement of the novel: ~15%
Number of memories killed in the cradle: ~1,000
Number of spliffs smoked: 0 — when there’s no time to roll, just pack a bowl!