Guest Blog: Author Editing Interview with Alina Popescu

Today I welcome Alina Popescu to the blog. Alina is the self-published author of many excellent LGBT stories, and she's here to share her thoughts on the editing process.

Hi, Nicki, and a big hello to your readers. Thank you for having me here as a guest!

1) Tell us a bit about you and your writing
I started writing when I was ten. I got into it by trying to write a book with this boy I liked. I stuck with it, and never looked back. I write urban fantasy, paranormal, science fiction, and contemporary stories, most of which fall into the gay/LGBT sub-genre. I have plans to move into mystery and YA in the future, but I have no clear plans on it.

When my debut novel, The Edge of Hope, was ready to go, I had no clue which type of publishing to choose. First, I got a contract from a very small UK publisher. I was happy with the potential collaboration when I signed, but then I changed my mind and decided to go indie. Later, I saw an anthology call from an LGBT fiction publisher and loved the sound of it. I sent in my story and suddenly became a hybrid author. Right now, most of my stuff is self-published. I am considering going hybrid again, but I haven’t decided yet.

2) What do you enjoy most about the editing process?
I have never seen editing like something hard or stressful. I’m always excited to start, as I know it’s going to make my book better. I enjoy that feeling you get that your book is so much more polished when you’re done with it.

I also enjoy another aspect a little too much: the comments my editors sometimes leave me. I tend to have unfortunate or funny typos, and I have been told repeatedly I’d made it to the leading positions of “funniest typos” tops. Laughing while you edit is certainly great, so I hope I keep making such mistakes.

3) What do you find hardest about the editing process?
The wait for the first round of edits from a professional editor. The way my process goes, once I have some idea about when my book comes back from the first round of edits, I set up the pre-order. From then on until I get the first round, I am super stressed. That’s the bit of time when I am convinced my book is crap and I should quit writing. If I get pre-orders, I wonder why people would buy my crap. When the email with the edits and initial feedback comes, I relax and go back to my normal, more confident self.

4) What are your general thoughts on editing as part of the overall publishing process?
I am the first to say that editing is that one part in the process you should never skip. You need another pair of eyes to go through your story, and those eyes need to belong to a professional. Editing simply makes your book better, and who would want to go without that? I know it’s a tough process for most authors, but if you focus on how enthusiastic you are about your book, and how your editors are just making it better, more polished, I think you can feel better about it.

5) What are your top editing-related tips for authors?
I will say it again: don’t skip editing! It’s just not worth it.
The second most important editing tip is to work with editors you trust. And if you trust them, then take their advice. Some edits are recommendations, and you should use your own judgement to decide, but in most cases, the editor knows best. You’ve hired a professional, you should take their professional opinions. I find it that most times I agree with editing suggestions and implement them immediately. Even when my reaction to some edits is to reject them for a specific reason, in about 70% of these cases, I make the suggested changes after considering them carefully. When I don’t, and have a good reason for it, and my editor agrees if I explain it properly. In the end, the story is far more solid because I treat my editors as the professionals they are.

About the Author
Alina Popescu is an author, traveler, and coffee addict. She has published several paranormal, science fiction, urban fantasy, and contemporary series, many of them having reached the Amazon bestseller lists for their genres. Her stories often fall under the LGBTQ fiction and romance subgenres.
Born and raised in Romania, Alina has been writing for most of her life. She’s an avid consumer of stories in all their forms. She’s fascinated by myths, folk tales, and other creators’ visions of the future. She finds her inspiration in books of all genres, movies, and the occasional TV shows or anime binges.

Alina is a proud geek and needs her fast internet connection and assortment of gadgets more than she needs air.

For a free taste of her writing, visit her website, subscribe to her newsletter and get a free copy of her military gay romance, Mission: Protect the Ex.