Editing a Genius

Editing a writer as successful as David Foster can be quite the task. But amidst all the haggling over grammatical issues and edited paragraphs, Glenn Kenny, an editor at Premiere Magazine, developed a friendship with the acclaimed author. In an interview with The House Next Door, Kenny reminisces about editing some of Wallace's most celebrated pieces of journalism. At one point, the editor mentioned to Wallace that the magazine was commissioning brief essays by well-known writers on various films. "I have some things to say about Terminator 2," Wallace said. So, Premiere bought a 500 word piece. Wallace turned in a 3,000 word treatise on how T2 was trashy, "FX Porn." Such were the challenges of working with the acclaimed author, editing was always an arduous process. Walace's acclaimed essay "David Lynch Keeps His Head" was originally 20,000 words before being trimmed to 7,500.