December fragments #23

Hope distilled: to be rescued from deletion…

… when I am gone all the experiences stored in my head will be gone too—they will be deleted with one swipe of the great eraser, and something in me squeaks ‘Oh no—let at least some of it be rescued!’ … By a long-established printer’s convention, a copy-editor wanting to rescue a deletion puts a row of dots under it and writes ‘Stet’ (let it stand) in the margin. This book is an attempt to ‘Stet’ some parts of my experience in its original form … All this book is, is the story of one old ex-editor who imagines that she will feel a little less dead if a few people read it.

Diana Athill, Stet: an editor’s life



Filed under December fragments 2012

4 responses to “December fragments #23

  1. annabelsmith

    I loved this book

  2. marlish glorie

    Oh, what a heart breaking wish…”to feel a little less dead”….to have left her stamp on the world, however small.

  3. Interesting woman, isn’t she, Annabel. And wow, such a portrait of a very different publishing world.

  4. Marlish, yes, such a primal human impulse, I think.

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