Episode 50

The Thief Who Keeps Stealing My Resume

Rosemi Mederos:

If you have plot bunnies coming out of your plot holes, it’s time for a writing break.

Hello again, we’re talking about books and movies today. Plus, the thief who stole my resume is at it again.

The Writing Break cafe is open, so let’s get into it.

Good news if you’re looking to relive the horrors and angst of puberty: Judy Blume is finally on board with a movie version of Are You There God? It’s me, Margaret.

About the cast, Blume said: “When I write I hear the characters, but I don’t see the characters, so to see them now after 50 years is incredible. And they are even better than I imagined.”

Abby Ryder Fortson plays Margaret, Rachel McAdams plays Margaret’s mother, Benny Safdie plays Margaret’s father, and Kathy Bates plays Margaret’s grandmother.

As to why 84-year-old Blume has agreed to a movie after all these years, she said, “I realized I wanted to see it while I’m still here.”

The film releases April 28th, and a movie tie-in print edition of this 53-year-old book releases February 28th. Check the show notes for a link to the movie’s trailer.

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For those of us still reading, Penguin Press has acquired world rights for Nathan J. Robinson and Noam Chomsky’s The Myth of American Idealism: How U.S. Foreign Policy Endangers the World. The book is slated to release in 2024.

Links to these articles can be found in the show notes of this episode and on writingbreak.com.

Also in the show notes is this episode’s gift to you.

You’ll find links to interesting books releasing this Spring. I could have included one link and left you to wade the genre waters on your own. Instead, I lovingly included links by category so you don’t even have to look at the books you’re not interested in. Almost like browsing a bookstore from the future. And the categories are: Manga, Middle Grade Comics & Graphic Novels, Adult Comics & Graphic Novels, Art, Architecture & Photography, Business & Economics, Cooking & Food, Essays & Literary Criticism, History, Lifestyle, Literary Fiction, Memoirs & Biographies.

As for me, I’m looking forward to receiving my pre-ordered ebook copy of Tremors in the Blood: Murder, Obsession, and the Birth of the Lie Detector by Amit Katwala.

And now, let’s spend some time on the Overthinking Couch applying for a library card.

Recently a friend told me that getting a library card was on her summer to-do list. Summer. It’s winter right now where she lives. That’s two whole seasons away. Since this friend lives in a different state, kidnapping her to go to the library was out of the question. Instead, I sent her the link to her local library’s online registration page. She can sign up online for free, and they’ll send her a card in the mail. Plus, she can start borrowing digital materials right away.

While doing this, I wondered if it was possible to register with a public library even if it’s not in your area. It turns out that some libraries let nonresidents join for an annual fee, which gives you access to their digital materials, including ebooks, audiobooks, and movies.

One in particular, Queens Local Library in New York, lets you become a member even if you’re outside the United States. Their annual fee is $50. Check the show notes for that information. So, tell me, when are you next visiting your local library?

Now, let’s settle further into the couch and review the case of the stolen CV.

Years ago, a non-editor stole my resume, put their name on it, and began passing it off as their own. I took it as a clear sign of the thief’s mental state and decided I did not have what it took to deal with this level of instability. This month it was recently brought to my attention that it’s still going on, and that the thief is even claiming to have edited books that I edited.

I sign nondisclosure agreements for so many of my authors and publishers, that the only books I ever clearly say that I edited are the ones in which the author has been kind enough to thank me in their published acknowledgments. This way, I don’t have to keep track of what books I’m allowed to discuss.

So, the books on this thief’s resume actually say in print that I was the editor.

Still, it is strange to be targeted in this manner. I discussed the theft with my inner circle, and many options were suggested to me, including getting my attorney involved. Some of my friends are attorneys, so I think that’s their natural reaction to things. But yes, it’s an option. My attorney friends say that because I was hired by a publishing house to do the work, it could be seen as a violation of my contract if they don’t believe I did the work. But I can provide a clear digital trail of my efforts if it ever comes to that. One friend said that it might be that the thief is trying to get me to contact them. That’s a weird way to go about it.

What concerns me is that it violates my authors. Editing is a job that tests your skill every minute you’re doing the job. You can take my resume and perhaps con someone into hiring you, but you will then have to do the work. In the years since my CV was first stolen, the thief has not amassed a resume substantial enough to replace mine. That’s because editing is harder than people think. There is so much to consider and so much to know when editing, and it’s possible to get to the end of a manuscript and think you did a good job when you didn’t because you have no idea how much information you’re missing. That’s why you need a professional editor.

When you’re good at editing, it’s the kind of profession that makes you respect other people’s professions. Does that make sense? When you know how much goes into each edit, you start to understand how much other professionals really know about what they do.

And when a good book editor encounters a good author, the respect and admiration is immeasurable. Authors don’t just have to know about many things, they also need the stamina to find out what they don’t know while conjuring emotions in the reader out of thin air. It is awe inspiring.

The bond I build with my authors over the weeks, months, and often years that I work with them is meaningful to me. To have someone lie about having edited a book means that they’re also lying about the authors and the entire production team. That’s where it gets sticky for me.

So, what do you think? How would you feel if someone was lying about having worked on your manuscript? Send me an email to podcast@writingbreak.com to let me know.

More importantly, do you have a good bond with your editor? I’m not the perfect editor for everyone, and I think it’s important that you find the right editor for your writing career. Be clear with your editor about how you like to work, and make sure you’re working with someone who respects you.

Until next time, remember, you deserved this break.

If you would like us to visit your favorite independent bookstore, feature your favorite independent author (even if it’s you), or discuss something you’re overthinking about, please email me at podcast@writingbreak.com.

Thank you for making space in your mind for The Muse today.

Writing Break is hosted by America’s Editor and produced by Allon Media with technical direction by Gus Aviles. Visit us at writingbreak.com or contact us at podcast@writingbreak.com.

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Rosemi Mederos


Rosemi is the founder of America's Editor, a book editing company.