Revision Quest

“How would you do it?” asks the woman who is showing me the ropes. “Why don’t you give it a try?” 

And so I return to my desk and spend a while coming up with a two-sentence blurb about our new podcast, featuring the phrase, “… a companion to the journal.” I send it back to her, and she says, “This is perfect, run it past the boss.” This is going to take a while. If I’ve learned anything these past five days, it’s that the boss is a reviser, almost pathologically so. Obviously it got her where it got her, so I have to keep that in mind, but I was prepared for some back-and-forth that would go on for hours.  

About forty-five minutes later, the boss props herself up on my desk and states, “Here’s the thing. It’s not a ‘companion.’ We need another word.” 

“Supplement?” I suggest. 

“No, it’s not a supplement either.” She then lists all of the reasons that the podcast doesn’t qualify as a supplement.  

“So what is it then?” I ask. 

She then proceeds to give me a perfect, literal definition of a companion podcast and concludes with, “See? Not a companion.” Since I couldn’t think of any other word, especially given her explanation, we agreed just to remove the offending phrase altogether. The rest of the blurb went in unmolested. 

I say this without irony or snark—I think I’m going to fall in love with this job. 


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