The full title explains more fully: Second Sight: An Editor’s Talks on Writing Revising and Publishing Books for Children and Young Adults.
An executive editor for Arthur A. Levine Books, an imprint of Scholastic, Cheryl Klein hosts one of the most generous websites I’ve visited. She posts transcripts of her talks as well as tools for writers to use in improving their craft. For example, The Plot Checklist. Ms. Klein is thoughtful about the process of editing and articulate in explaining her process. I must admit, I’ve been a silent fan-girl for years.
I received Second Sight as a Christmas gift – requested, of course – and it already feels like a gift that will keep on giving. My biggest problem with it is that it needs to savored. And yet, I am impatient. I want to read it all now. And to understands it all, now. I want to be the kind of writer she respects. Now. Now. Now.
But I must allow time to digest and process.
- Her talks, presented as essays, are deep, thoughtful and practical – they remind me of some Vermont College lectures. She’d fit right in on that campus.
- She provides insight into the editing/revision process of working with amazing writers such as Francisco X. Stork and Lisa Yee. Spoiler alert: there was a lot of work done to make their books brilliant.
- Second Sight is a nice blend of philosophy and theory with practical step by step tips for improving your writing.
- Some of my favorites (to be savored and examined more closely): The Art of Detection where she introduces the steps of TRUCK: Techniques of Revision Used by Cheryl Klein; Four Techniques to get at the Emotional Heart of Your Story; Twenty-five Revision Techniques.
And… she led me to Jennifer Crusie’s delightful and whimsical book collages – except they are oh so much more than glue and paper. Field trip, SBB?
Sarah Wones Tomp
WRITING ON THE SIDEWALK