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Before publishing my first book, Nick Newton Is Not a Genius, my editor and I disagreed about how the last paragraph of the last chapter should end. She commented that the ending would “gild the lily,” but I thought those last few sentences added a sense of closure and finality.

The extra sentences stayed in until the copyedit, where my editor again recommended leaving them out. I finally went along with her suggestion despite liking those extra sentences.

Why did I finally give up those last sentences? Not merely because she’s my editor. She’s also more experienced than I am. Maybe she sees something I can’t. And maybe one day I’ll see it, too. But leaving or including those last few lines didn’t diminish the story’s theme or overall plot, so it was no big deal either way.

I suppose the publishing relationship is a lot like any other relationship in that I have to pick my battles wisely. A friend, relative, coworker, or another person in my life may hold a differing opinion, but that doesn’t mean that I need to argue about it. Being willing to let go of the little things frees me up for discussion about more important things—and, in this case, maybe even helps encourage a second book contract. ~_^