Ask Daphne! But how do you really feel about independent editors?

September 26th, 2008 • Kate

Because something about editors makes me think of tortoise shell, these Louboutin beauties for Curious, who asked in a comment:

Does it change your perception of (or willingness to take on) a potential client to know that he needed to hire an independent editor to get his work up to a publishable standard?

Not really. A lot of writers don’t think they have access to writing groups, which can provide many of the same services as independent editors for free, plus there are often munchies, conversation, and good friends. Plus, I think independent editors, many of whom spent a number of years inside publishing houses, can provide a different benefit to an author, helping them to make their manuscript not just better, but more saleable.
What doesn’t impress me is when you use a blurb from someone you’ve paid to help you with your work to try to sell it to me. That’s just… not a good plan.
Look, some writers are fantastic at writing, at getting their ideas down on paper, and less great about going back and editing those words. Would I rather see a writer’s rough draft, or something they recognized wasn’t quite up to snuff yet, and paid someone to help them polish it? No question — I want to see the shiny. As long as you know as a writer that you’re not always going to have that crutch available to you, and that the best thing for a long term career in this industry is to build the skills that will help you turn your own work into brilliant jewels yourself, rather than outsourcing it.

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