You have an editor, but...

Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by RiverSong, Jul 25, 2019.

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  1. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    But, really, you can find a good editor who does it all. That's what professional editors do. That's what I would expect working with an editor regardless of how the work is being published. I imagine there's some pretty good options out there. If I was going to self publish, I would spend the majority of my budget on hiring the best editor I out there. I let an editor mold my work and trust them. I'm not saying that's always easy, but editors can be freaking amazing.

    When I hired an editor, I went with someone who had worked in publishing at places that I was familiar with. Her rates were still hire than what I could afford. We worked something out. I think I got her to read the first thirty pages. So I know a good editor isn't cheap. But I just think they're worth every penny. And for every penny I'm paying I expect them to do it all.
     
  2. big soft moose

    big soft moose The Moderating Moose Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    but not all at the same time which was my key point - the best editor in the world won't help if you introduce errors while working through the editors notes from the structural/copy edit.

    you definitely can use the same editor for all three phases, but the manuscript will still need to go back to them after your revisions following the editing phase for the final proof read

    If you are thinking that they make all the changes and you just nod and smile you have fundamentally misunderstood how editing a novel works.

    its also not a great idea to blindly accept every change - they can be the best editor in the world but they aren't the author...
     
  3. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    @big soft moose -- I'm not misunderstanding anything. All I'm saying is that it's important to hire the right editor. I don't see a problem with that. In fact, that shouldn't be a problem at all.
     
  4. big soft moose

    big soft moose The Moderating Moose Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    Absolutely - but you also seem to be saying that they can do the proof read at the same time as the edit... they definitely can't no matter how good they are, because you are going to do revisions after you get the marked up document back, and that can introduce more errors..

    As I said you can definitely use the same individual if you want (and they want- some editors don't do proofs because its a different skill) but the proof needs to be done last, not at the same time as the line/copy edit
     
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  5. big soft moose

    big soft moose The Moderating Moose Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    Also the argument that they should do it all at xyz price is flawed because the proof reading is a price element... no proof reading (by editor)= lower price, proof reading as part of the editing service = higher price.
     
  6. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    But aren't you saying you need the proofreading service anyway? I'm saying I would want an editor to do it all. It would seem we are on the same page in that it's worth the cost, maybe even necessary, the way you put it.
     
  7. big soft moose

    big soft moose The Moderating Moose Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    You don't need a proof reading service if the editor includes one in their service - but my point is that the editors proof read can't be done at the same time as the structural/copy/line edit

    the likely sequence is

    first draft
    self edits (and beta readers/software edits/fact checkers, if you use them)
    1)Submit to editor for structural edit (you may not need this step depending on your experience)
    Revisions with structural report
    2)Back to editor for copy/line edit (some editors do this with the structural, but the weakness is that you aren't then getting line edits on any structural revisions)
    Revisions with copy/line mark up
    3)Back to the editor / or to the proof reader for the proofread
    Revisions with proof readers notes
    To the formatter/through the formatting software
    Final read to check the format didn't screw up
    Upload and publish

    Some editors provide just 1, or just 2, or 1 and 2, or 1,2 and 3 and obviously the price reflects the work involved.
     
  8. jannert

    jannert Who? Whooo? Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Do check the blog post. I think it might answer your concerns.

    One point she makes several time is that communication is the key. You and your editor/editors must be on the same 'page' when it comes to what they'll be doing for you.

    I also suspect (although this isn't part of the blog remit) that there will be a lot of difference between getting short stories edited and getting a novel 'done.' The main difference, of course, is the time involved. Speaking as somebody who frequently beta-reads for free, I can say it's quite easy to 'edit' a short story. Doesn't take long at all, even proofreading. A novel? Yoiks....
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2019
  9. Mckk

    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I know the post is a few months old, but wanted to add - sometimes readers find "errors" that aren't errors because their own grasp of grammar or varieties of English is poor. I posted something in the Workshop here once and someone commented "You need to proofread your stuff. Realize is with a Z, for example." (I paraphrase, but that's the message and those were the "errors")

    Realise is only with a Z in America. It's firmly with an S in the UK. (I'm British) But across the pond it's actually pretty common we don't know how the other side writes their English.

    Another time I mentioned the word windscreen to my sister, who was puzzled and told me it isn't a word. She consulted her husband, who also said it isn't a word. They're both British. I looked it up and turns out, windscreen is American. In the UK we use windshield. (I've lived abroad for too long lol)

    So... don't take every SPAG comment to heart, honestly. Sometimes it reveals their lack of knowledge more than it does yours. Unfortunately with reviews, there's no back and forth like I had with the critique and with my own sister, and it's your book they'll hurt. It's a shame, but nothing you can do about that really. But yeah, it isn't always you.
     
  10. big soft moose

    big soft moose The Moderating Moose Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    That's the other way round - windshield is American, windscreen is British and Australian
     
  11. jannert

    jannert Who? Whooo? Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Yep. As an ex-yank, I can confirm we always said 'windshield.'
     
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  12. Mckk

    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Haha oops. Yeah as I said, I've been abroad way too long! :D
     
  13. guy9859

    guy9859 New Member

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    I'm a working editor and most of the submissions I see are rejected because the level of storytelling is amateur. Most of the problems do not involve spelling or grammar. At the company I work for, there are three editors and a proofreader. "Real" book publishers have four editors. Since no two books are the same once the authors reach a certain level of skill, there is a lot to look out for. We have one writer who likes to add details many pages from the first mention of something. That means taking those added details and putting them back to where they should be instead of confusing the reader later on. Or saying someone can do something and 20 or 30 pages later, they can't. A lack of consistency, problems with pacing and unclear or missing details, are some of the others.

    I try not to use certain words when talking to writers, but when I say "The pacing is off." I get a deer in headlights look. I suggest new writers get the jargon down so a good conversation can be had. The writer and editor should work together.
     
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