When Editors Become Psychiatrists: The Revisionist.
"Come in, sir, and tell me what's bothering you."
"Well, you see ma'am, I'm feeling really depressed."
"Let's talk about that and see how we can fix it--you know, on a structural level."
"Okay, well, my wife is seeing someone else, I think my son is doing drugs, and my doctor just told me I might have a lung disease."
"No, no, that's all wrong. You need to be more specific here--your wife isn't just seeing someone else, she's having a passive-agressive reaction by sleeping with one of her co-workers--the intern, because it implies a need to regain power. Your son should be doing, let's see, cocaine, because it makes things more interesting, don't you think? More dangerous that way. And your doctor, well--"
"I'm sorry, wait a minute. That's not what's going on--"
"Okay sure, but your story won't sell. It needs work."
"Excuse me? Sell? Story?"
"Don't you think it would be more interesting to everyone if we added touches of magical realism here and there?"
"Uh, I'm sorry. I don't understand."
"Listen, this is your story and you need to take control of it. But not too much control, you know, let it develop organically. It should build up to a nice arc and then wrap up--not too neatly, mind you--and have a few little bumps at the end, to show the main charac--um, to show that you--have really learned your lesson."
"My lesson? Uh, listen...I should...I should really be going."
"Okay, but when you come in next week, think about the elements we discussed. And remember--show, don't tell."