A lit jack-o'-lantern sits next to a wooden frame that encircles two wooden rectangular shapes that display the date October 31.
Image

Halloween—What’s in a Name?

Written by Jen Groundwater; copy edited by Lydia du Bois

In his lengthy poem “Halloween,” the beloved Scottish poet Robert Burns popularized the titular holiday name, describing what eighteenth-century Scots got up to on October 31:

Some merry, friendly, countra folks,
Together did convene,
To burn their nits, an’ pou their stocks,*
An’ haud their Halloween**
Fu’ blythe that night.***

Continue reading

A black bottle with the illustrated label "Bat Wing Potion" sits to the right of a candle and a fake skull that are both on top of a book called "The Works of Poe."
Image

Gleaming Things

Written by David Antrobus; copy edited by Lydia du Bois

When I was kindly asked to write a blog post about editing horror, I was happy to accept an invitation to discuss two of my favourite things: editing and horror fiction. But then, I stepped back and thought some more, and a question occurred to me: How is editing horror any different from editing fiction in general? At first blush, the answer to that is a simple one: it isn’t.

Except—and don’t you love the exceptions?—when the editor is involved early in the editing process. Both developmental editing and manuscript evaluations offer the greatest opportunity to help authors shape their manuscripts. Many of my clients across all genres are independent self-publishers and therefore don’t generally have the budget to saunter their leisurely way through the various levels of editing, but those who do ask for those early stages will likely benefit the most.

Continue reading