September 25, 2012

Editorial Qualities

There are so many resources out there for Authors that it can sometimes be a bit overwhelming. One google search can pull up thousands of results about commas, or editors, or how to get onto review blogs. That said, one of the things that I love about the ease of access to this information is being able to share the good stuff when you find it.

There are a lot of Authors out there (in the Indie world especially) who debate the necessity or effectiveness of an Editor. Obviously, I am firmly on the side of the positives attached to having one, and any clarification of the Editor's job is one that I am interested in sharing. I stumbled across this article on the SPAWN website the other day by Patricia L. Fry. This article not only says what I firmly believe, but also lists some of the things that an Editor will do to your manuscript. It isn't short. But neither is the job descriptions for an Editor!

Of the points she makes in her list of 20 things an Editor looks for, some are obvious and some might be surprising. My personal favourites are numbers 4 (redundancies), 6 (too many sentences in the passive voice), 8 (qualifiers that weaken sentences), 11 (muddy writing), 17 (discrepancies in tense and person), and 19 (transitioning troubles). But on the whole I think it gives a well rounded view of what an Editor can and should do for your manuscript.

So regardless of your view on your baby's brilliance (and let me clarify, I am talking about your manuscript not your actual children), it never hurts to let someone else polish it up a little too.

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