I appreciate copyeditors--I truly do. They save me from the humiliation of having the world see that I somehow typed Normand rather than Norman. They make sure Flanagan doesn't drift into Flannigan by the end of the book and that the character whose name I changed from Isabella to Grace is always Grace.
But there are other changes that irritate the expletive deleted out of me. I still think Major Weston should be referred to as the Major rather than the major, because that's what they taught back in the Dark Ages when I was in school. At some point, NAL decided that Napoleon will now be Napoléon, which I personally think comes off looking like an affectation. But I gave up fighting those sorts of battles long ago. In fact, I now let my copyeditors change all sorts of things I once would have queried, which is why a close reader will notice that this series, which is supposed to have its own style sheet, is actually all over the place.
I've have copyeditors who changed the Squire to the squire. So in the next book, I'll type "the squire." Then I'll get a copyeditor who changes it to the Squire. Some copyeditors will change a character's musings from "But . . . why? " to "But . . . Why? " Others will carefully change "But . . . Why?" to "But . . . why?" I give up.
And then there are these lovely little blue bubbles that really make my heart seize up:
("Au: Per the publisher's preferred dictionary, this term was first used as a verb around 1976; reword?")
She's right, of course; disconnect, especially used in this sense, is very modern, and I know it must be changed. The problem is, it perfectly captures what I want to say. I can flail around forever trying to come up with a substitute, and I'm rarely happy with what I eventually choose. In this instance, I changed it to "... the painful sense of being a stranger to himself, and the questions, remained." But that really isn't what I wanted to say because it lacks that sense of, well, disconnect.
It's at times like this that I start muttering, "I want to write contemporaries."