At some point in an editor's career, he or she edits at least one hard book. And by that, I don't mean one that is difficult technically (lots of errors, plot's a mess, etc.)—I mean one that reads like a gut punch to your soul. Like with many other colleagues, mine was a cancer memoir. And I'm proud to say that Popcorn from the Void: Observations, Manic Kvetching, and the Raw Truth of Leukemia is now on sale.
A compilation of blog posts by Todd Park, a magazine journalist, the text itself was fairly easy to edit. But knowing from the outset how his story would end (spoilers!) made progress tough sometimes, though having to stop every few pages to confirm a song title from Todd's playlist brought one welcome ear worm after another. Then, just as I was in the home stretch, came the manuscript's final sock to my spiritual jaw: Todd died on my birthday. Suffice to say, I was a couple of days late with the final delivery (thanks for understanding, Christine!).
All in all, I'm glad I did it and that I got to read (and edit) the story of this brave man. But, I'm likewise glad I no longer need to pay this particular due.