Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Celebrating Carina Press's One-Year Anniversary

In celebration of our one year anniversary, I asked as many of our Harlequin team members and Carina Press freelance editors as possible to write a short blog post, talking about what the past year or so has been like for them, working on Carina Press. I deliberately didn't provide any direction other than that, because I wanted to see what people came up with, in the spirit of Carina's 1st anniversary. I was so pleased when I saw what they'd all come up with, and had to say (and some of these posts made me just a little teary)! I hope you enjoy the post, and look for your opportunity to win a Carina Press book at the bottom of this post. ~Angela James

Denise Nielsen is a freelance editor for Carina Press. You can follow her on Twitter.
When friends or family hear that I get to read books for a living, the response is always the same: first, a laugh, because anyone who knows me well has seen the way in which I devour books; and second, at least from other book lovers, outright envy. Among non-writers though, there seems to be little understanding of what an editor actually does. Many of them think I spend my days reading, with the occasional fix of spelling and grammar errors, and they don’t understand of the depth of the work that goes into getting a book ready for publication.

It’s the depth of that work that I love. Working with authors to hone and polish their stories and get them into shape for publication is the most rewarding thing about editing. It’s always a fine balance to ensure the author’s unique voice—which is of course what sold the book to us in the first place—is maintained, even while we suggest changes to words, sentence structure, and scenes to make a story clearer, tighter, stronger. Sometimes, this is the most frustrating part of editing too. Sometimes sentences just don’t seem to work no matter how we rearrange them, and we spend a great deal of time cussing and pulling our hair out.

Actually, that isn’t true because at Carina, we have an amazing support team. Even though my fellow editors and I live in different places—I’m in Canada—we talk regularly. Our virtual water cooler is a place where we can always go to get advice, to talk out a difficulty, ask a question, or even just to rant about something that isn’t working. This connection means that even working at my desk on my farmhouse in Ontario, I can reach out and ask a question, and have an answer (or a bunch of them) often within minutes. The Carina team is exactly that: a team. And I love that.

For me, the biggest challenge I have faced in the past year has been time management. I am good at it. At least I thought I was. But juggling the reading of new manuscripts, making recommendations, and editing new acquisitions taught me that learning to pace myself in very important. I am a fast reader, so it is easy for me to read (and then recommend) lots of books quickly. But having a pile to edit all at the same time is not so easy. Editing should not be rushed.

It’s your fault though, dear writers. You keep sending us so many amazing stories, and we are so excited to read them all. The best thing about working for Carina is seeing all the incredible stories that cross our desks. They are imaginative and powerful, and keep me reading deep into the night sometimes. So perhaps my envious friends and family have a point after all. I do spend many of my days reading. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

To celebrate Carina's one year anniversary of publishing books, we're giving away some prizes. Today, on each of the nineteen blogs our team members are featured on, we're giving away a download of a Carina Press book to one random winner (that's nineteen total winners!) All you need to do to be entered to win is comment on this post. You can enter to win on all nineteen posts. In addition, on the Carina Press blog, we're giving away a grand prize of a Kobo ereader and 12 Carina Press books of the winner's choice. Visit the Carina Press blog to enter to win, and to see links to all 19 of today's blog posts.

And a sincere thank you from all of us, to our readers and authors, for making Carina Press's first year a success!

56 comments:

Lisa (Lisa's World of Books) said...

Thank you for sharing your view and Happy Anniversary!

krisgils33 said...

happy anniversary!

Lisa J said...

It's your fault my book budget has exploded. Thank you for a year of great reading.

Caridad Pineiro said...

Thank your for a great post and for all that you do at Carina! Happy Anniversary.

PhyllisC said...

Happy Birthday - Happy Anniversary. Does it really matter which one? Here's to a great year and to many more to come.

Chele Blades said...

Happy Anniversary to Carina Press and the great authors!!

Carol Stephenson said...

Denise, congratulations on the 1st year and thank you for all your hard work in bringing us such great stories!

Blodeuedd said...

Happy Anniversary :D And keep brining us great books

Anonymous said...

Always nice to hear "from the other side." Thanks for sharing, Denise!
Happy birthday/anniversary to Carina Press!
(Limecello- I'm on my phone and nothing's letting me sign in to comment.)

Denise Nielsen said...

All I have to say is that Carina the publisher, Carina books, Carina authors, and Carina readers...you all rock. It's exciting to be part of it all.

Amy S. said...

I had no idea what editors did but it seems like Carina has a great team of editors! Congrats on the anniversary!

Maria said...

Congratulations on your 1 year anniversary! Sounds like you really enjoy what you do and that's always nice to see! Here's hoping for an ever better 2nd year for both you and Carina!

CrystalGB said...

Happy one year anniversary. Wishing you many more successful years.
Crystal816[at}hotmail[dot}com

StacieDM said...

Hello Denise!
Congratulations on the first anniversary of Carina Press!

I would imagine that you are a very fast reader. Unfortunately I'm not a fast reader at all. I don't think I would be able to keep all of the stories straight if I had to read so many in a short period of time.

user1123 AT comcast DOT net

PoCoKat said...

Happy Anniversary Carina Press!
littleone AT shaw DOT ca

Patricia said...

Happy Anniversary! Keep bringing us more books.

flchen1 said...

Happy anniversary, Denise! It's been such an exciting first year for Carina Press--thank you for bringing us great stories! Looking forward to many more in the years to come :)

ReneeRearden said...

Happy anniversary...and keep up the good work. As long as you keep reading, I won't have to be jealous because I'll get to keep reading! =D

ReneeRearden(at)yahoo(dot)com

kerry said...

Happy birthday

sherie said...

Congrats on a year! I know I love my digital books!

Susan said...

Happy Anniversary Carina Press!

Ju Dimello said...

LOL ! So it's all the writers' fault now ;) I'm happy to be a writer then!!

Happy first anniversary!

Jess (Gone with the Words) said...

Yay!! Happy Anniversary!!

jess [at] gonewiththewords [dot] com

Karen said...

Congratulations on the first year anniversary of Carina Press! Thank you for sharing insight on what you do; the joy you feel for your job is evident. Wishing you all continued success!

shiderly77 said...

Happy Anniversary! Carina has had some awesome books this past year, glad I got to read a few!

shiderly77@yahoo.com

Lisa B said...

Great post! Happy Anniversary and here's to another year of great books!

Lisa B
modokker at yahoo dot com

Cathy M said...

Hi Marie and Denise,

Huge congrats to both of you on your one year anniversary.


caity_mack at yahoo dot com

Marie Rose Dufour said...

Happy Anniversary. It's nice to hear about editors who really enjoy reading books and enjoy the craft of writing as much as the writers!

jayhjay said...

Happy Anniversary to you all1

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

You make the job sound so appealing it's enough to induce crossover! :)

booklover0226 said...

Congratulations for such a grand and successful year.

Thanks to Carina Press, I've discovered many new authors.

Thanks,
Tracey D
booklover0226 at gmail dot com

Eva said...

Thanks for all the hard work in making of a book!
Congratulations and Happy Anniversary to Carina and all the wonderful authors!

Julie said...

I admit it, I am totally envious! Thanks so much for a year of wonderful books!
jwitt33 at live dot com

June M. said...

Congrats on the first year and wishing for you to have an even better next year. Thank you for sharing with us.

manning_j2004 at yahoo dot com

Marie Force said...

Thanks to everyone who came out to help us celebrate today! :-)

Denise Nielsen said...

Thanks to all who visited - you are what makes this book business so fantastic. And big thanks to Marie for hosting.

L. K. Below said...

Congrats on one year, Carina! And glad to hear how much you like your job, Denise. Best to you and the family!

lbelow(at)lbelow.net

Carla said...

Great look at your job. I've actually found Carina books to be some of the best edited ebooks that I've purchased so keep up the good work!

emilystarr373 said...

Yay for one year down!! I love the fact that your water cooler is virtual..it means that even when you've ripped your hair out because of sentences not fitting no one else see's it!! :) Wonderful post!

kog said...

Congrats on your first year, Denise, Angela & team!

Coleen Kwan said...

I can attest to Denise's dedication and editing skills. As a debut author for Carina, I didn't really know what to expect from my editor, but Denise has blown me away with her high standards. Thanks for all your hard work, Denise, and many happy returns on your anniversary!

holls said...

Carina press books are addictive. Im so glad I could celebrate birthday one with you!

Holly wright at comcast dot net

JulieD said...

Happy to hear there's a Canadian on staff! Happy anniversary, Carina :D

lindseye said...

It has been an entertaining year.

Jen B. said...

Happy Anniversary!

mbreakfield said...

Congrats on one year!
marlenebreakfield(at)yahoo(dot)com

lisagk said...

Love the idea of the virtual watercooler. Congrats.

Sheree said...

Happy Anniversary!

ironss [at] gmail [dot] com

ms bookjunkie said...

Time management…yeah. *coughcough* Happy Anniversary!

Stella (Ex Libris) said...

Thank you for the great post, it is so interesting reading about the behind the scenes of the publishing :-)

Thanks to you this last year I have discovered so many wonderful new authors, series, books and many have become favourites of mine, THANK YOU!

Congratulations to the whole Carina team and Happy 1st anniversary, here's to many more! :-)

stella.exlibris (at) gmail (dot) com

gigis said...

Great post and Happy Anniversary!

gigi

Denise Nielsen said...

Blown away by all the great comments you guys are leaving. Feeling the love (well, we are in the romance business). Nice to see some familiar faces here too - Coleen, Linds, thanks for dropping by. Now, back to the editing - I'm working on a fantastic time travel, a detective mystery, an Amazon fantasy, and a swashbuckling high seas adventure: all things to look forward to in the next year. Stay tuned.

Bratty said...

I agree, editing should not be rushed! That's important to readers quality-wise. Thanks for your hard work! outredgeous at gmail dot com

Mary G said...

Huge Congrats!!

Jolene and Family said...

Huge congrats and Happy Anniversary!!

Marie Force said...

Congrats to Limecello! You'll be hearing from Angela!