copyeditor love

Yay, I have some book news for you! The photo shoot for the cover of Keep Holding On was last week. Which means we’re getting so much closer (sorry, corny habit) to seeing the cover. My editor will send me the designer’s draft, then I’ll give her my comments for changes, and then I’ll post the cover here for you! Can’t wait to share it.

In the meantime, I have an early review of Keep Holding On to share with you. My amazing copyeditor, Susan Jeffers Casel, was so sweet about sharing some of her thoughts when she handed in the copyedits. Susan is a legendary copyeditor. She has copyedited many famous books. I have no idea how I got lucky enough for her to work on mine. But I am very happy she does. Here’s what she had to say about my new book:

“This is by far the best book by Susane Colasanti that I have worked on. It’s important and so very needed by teens. And it is wonderfully written; it is never sentimental or maudlin, but looks at the life of one bullied teenage girl with clear eyes and a truthful heart. The characters are so incredibly real that I found myself getting sick to my stomach at the bullying, and so angry at the bullies (including the protagonist’s mom) that I wanted to slap them myself! The narrator/protagonist is a very likable girl, who is easily identified with, and I believe the readers will have great sympathy for her, especially because she is not whiny or self-indulgent. She just tells it like it is, and that is heartbreaking, especially since she keeps trying to not break your heart – or have hers broken for that matter. The plot never lags, and the storyline is more than realistic; it is almost as though it is happening right in front of you.

This is such an important, must-read book for all teens and tweens. I have enjoyed all her books, but this one is very special, so very heartfelt, and so timely that I think it should be on reading lists at schools.”

Well. I am blown away. What touches me the most about her words is that, in a lot of ways, Keep Holding On is my story. I wasn’t sure how it would be received or even if it would get published. My goal in writing this book was to reach out to anyone who is being bullied, anyone who has ever felt left out, neglected, or alone. Hopefully, it will achieve that goal.

Now I’m going through Susan’s copyedits. Scrutinizing every word. Debating optional punctuation. This is the part where I want to make sure the book is perfect. Of course, it never is. Far from it. There will always be things I’ll want to change. But I’ll always want this book to reach out to readers and help them feel less alone. Maybe even make them feel like anything is possible. And that will never change.

16 thoughts on “copyeditor love

  1. I have a feeling this book will have a special place on my bookshelf soon. I’m very sensitive to bullying because my “friends” exclude and ignore me, and I often feel alone. I felt this especially today, and came home and read this, and I feel a little better. Thank you Universe for good timing. I’ll see you in Baltimore.

  2. Yay for the positive comments from your copyeditor! I’m eagerly awaiting this book. While I was never outright bullied in school, I certainly have experienced the pain of exclusion. Seventh grade was a hard year. Thankfully, my sister was also in my grade, so I always had a buddy and ally.

  3. How exciting and what a wonderful compliment. It is so critical for everyone, young and old, to read books that show a clear and honest picture of what it’s like to be bullied. It’s raw, painful, and often dangerous. It needs to stop so thank you, in advance, for this novel. Really looking forward to reading Keep Holding On!

  4. I think that this book will be a wonderful read for so many people- my friend once got to such a low point due to verbal bullies, put downs, and exclusions that she actually turned to self-injury.
    Can’t wait to read.

  5. These are awesome comments. It just makes me want to read the book even sooner. I am a huge fans of your books (hoping they will be made into movie). Can not wait to read this one!

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