Dropping out of the choir concert was definitely the right decision: the hours I did not spend driving to and from the city, and in rehearsal, have been put to use, and the lessened strain helped too. Usually I spend a lot of time in prep for a concert working on the piano at home, listening to rehearsal tapes or CDs of the music, and I like to come into a concert able to “hear” my part in my head the whole way through, no doubts. This time I couldn’t–and I could not take the time to do the prep work I wanted to do. That made it harder to concentrate on the edits.
Where I am now is page 609 of 862 (I have no idea how the other page got in there!! Will check to make sure there’s not a blank one as a last pass.) Production is scheduling the copy editor, so the thing must go back when I said I’d send it. I won’t bore you with the process any more, having described it before, except to say I’ve found weird little fossils of former drafts, most of which Editor caught and some of which I found lying there like a petrified log, right in the middle of something else. Editor and I find different kinds of fossils, which is interesting.
The hardest thing was finding in the new form the sections whose positions had been changed from the order that Editor had worked on. Then there’s the temptation that Dorothy L. Sayers described so brilliantly in Gaudy Night, with the scholar who kept changing things as a book was going through production. In my case, the temptation to plump up a subplot, give a character more lines to fully express himself, etc. Or tweak this phrase one more time.
Back to work. I need to get to page 650 before I quit tonight and it’s already 8:42 pm.