Think your editor is tough? Try this one.

Back in the days when gladiators hacked away at each other, there was always the man who decided whether the defeated should live or die.  The job is usually given to the Emperor in movies, but in fact any senior man could have been the designated thumbs-up-thumbs-down guy.  

The official title for this fellow was...the editor.   (evil laughter in background)

24 comments:

Loretta Ross said...

And what does it say about our society that a "thumbs up" is now considered good and a "thumbs down" bad?

Sean said...

Don't giv your editor ideas :/ :)

Gary Corby said...

Hi Loretta, I thought I'd avoid the thumb controversy, but yes, it's all wrong.

Gary Corby said...

It's too late, Sean. My editor also does Roman mysteries.

Linda G. said...

Ha! Perfect.

E.J. Wesley said...

So what does the hand waffle mean? Off with the head but leave the loins? :) This settles it; I'm going to make certain that all discussions I have with editors begin with me tying their hands to their side.

And here all along I thought I was only risking professional scrutiny and personal shame with this writing stuff, now it seems so much more serious.

Nice post!

EJW

Vicki Rocho said...

That's funny in a strange, sadistic kinda way.

Harley May said...

Does that make you the gladiator? Who are you battling? Other authors? Let's see a Bill Cameron / Gary Corby cage match. GO!

Vicky Alvear Shecter said...

I love knowing that about the roots for "editor." It has always cracked me up. Ah, to have the power to decide what sentence lives or dies!

Amalia T. said...

Hahahaha.

Awesome.

Alli Sinclair said...

Just... brilliant.

Gary Corby said...

Hi EJ, welcome to the blog!

The hand signals you see in movies are all wrong. Thumbs either up or down meant death. Life was making a circle with thumb and forefinger. And just as often, the editor might simply shout out.

Gary Corby said...

Hi Vicki R, welcome to the blog too. We have lots of new arrivals today.

Yep, this place is all about funny, strange, and occasionally icky.

You're also adding to our fine collection of Vickies, joining the excellent ancient history authors Vicky Shecter and and Vicki Leon.

Gary Corby said...

Speaking of which, hi Vicky! Yeah I'm murdering darlings by the bucket load at the moment, trying to get this third book done.

Almost there. I'll have it done by tomorrow.

Gary Corby said...

Harley! Welcome! BC versus me would be an easy win for the cage.

Gary Corby said...

And welcome too to Alli. I don't think you've been here before, unless my memory is bad? Lovely to see you.

L. T. Host said...

That's amazing. You never cease to surprise me with these little factoids.

I am better at party small talk thanks to you.

Is it tomorrow yet? :D

Gary Corby said...

Hey LT,

I'm 17 to 19 hours ahead of you, so it's always tomorrow.

Alli Sinclair said...

Hi Gary, this is my first time to your blog but I have followed your journey through Janet's blog. I still remember the "Do you know Gary Corby" episode. :-) It's great to see a fellow Aussie doing so well. I'm looking forward to reading your book!

Gary Corby said...

Hey Alli,

I had no idea you were Australian until you said that!

Also just saw you're a member of the local Sisters in Crime. I belong to the international chapter (despite the incorrect plumbing...the overseas chapters don't care). Do you write crime?

Susanna Fraser said...

Life was making a circle with thumb and forefinger.

So...you're saying that the OK sign predates OK itself by, oh, 2000 years or so?

Gary Corby said...

I'm getting out of my depth here! There are people who've studied hand signals, but I'm not one of them.

I think the OK sign might be somewhat North American. I'm not aware of it being used elsewhere.

Forming a circle with finger is used in various Asian dances; it's probably universal?

LINDA FAULKNER said...

I'm thinking that hand and finger signals might make an excellent topic for a humorous, non-fiction book!

Gary Corby said...

Believe it or not Linda, I believe someone's already written a book on the history of hand signals, but I can't for the life of me recall the title.