Just couldn't think of anything worth blogging about this last week. But then it's been a fearsomely busy week. Have barely had time to lift my head from my desk, let alone run the Dyson round the house, ankle-deep though the floors are with the usual unappealing melange of sand, glitter and cake crumbs. I suspect I have sent and received more emails this week than ever before in the history of my Outlook in/out boxes. (But this will remain a mere suspicion because I certainly don't have time to go and count them.)
Sometimes I am asked: ‘What does a freelance editor actually DO then?’ A question usually supplemented by a remark containing the word ‘just’. As in: ‘I suppose it’s mainly “just” checking spellings 'n’ stuff, isn’t it?’
Well, to give you an idea (and excuse myself for this round of blogger's block), in the last seven days I have wrestled with a textbook (and its somewhat problematical footnotes) on the legacy of Marxism on Contemporary International Law, and another on the History of Ecumenism in Wales. I have edited one law journal focusing on decision-making in Chinese courts and ‘living law’, and two journals on aspects of Welsh history and archaeology, one of which I am now also typesetting. I’ve researched and located the most up-to-date statistical data for the new editions of two student law textbooks. I’ve also found and inserted page references into the statutory tables for another student law book; proofread some web content for a training course for aspiring City traders; finished preparing a ‘text and materials’ book on Revenue Law for typesetting; commissioned some content for one of the looseleaf manuals I manage; started copy-editing a book on Managing Executive Health; and carried out some more preparatory work on my forthcoming David Britton website.
The school holidays are nearly over, however, so working life will return to what passes as ‘normal’ hereabouts – which is not saying very much. Merely that I will not be needing to intervene in so many pointless squabbles or have glitter (yes, glitter again – it is a ubiquitous element of life with a 5-year-old daughter) dropped in my keyboard or have to start planning lunch the moment breakfast is finally cleared away. On the other hand . . . there are an awful lot of name-tapes to be sewn into new uniform in the next two days. And finding of books and sports kit and sharpening of pencils and last-minute practising of musical instruments sadly left gathering dust (and no doubt glitter) over the past seven weeks. Ho hum.
On top of which, there’s the run up to the much anticipated Wedding in Sandhurst. I have been on my knees adjusting the hem of my elder daughter’s bridesmaid’s dress for days on end. She must either grow between-times or shrink, or slump sideways or something, because however hard I try, it never seems exactly straight and even. I am hoping, therefore, for a light breeze on the day, to create a bit of movement, and then my dressmaking deficiencies will not be so evident. Then there are haircuts (and highlights) and a trip to the zoo and an emergency dash into town for Draconian Pants (as my less-than-sylphlike female readers will understand), in order to make up for radical weight-loss plan not having quite, er, 'delivered' - owing partly to an unfortunate but understandable predilection for Maya Gold , and partly to having by no stretch of the imagination kept to my 'Training Programme' for next week’s Fun Run through Colchester’s Castle Park. I shall be running as part of the Colchester Rugby Club team. Which is such a laughably unlikely idea that it cannot possibly be true.
Except that it is.