Wednesday, December 4, 2013
#ISWG: That Editor Must Be Wrong #IAmWriting
One of the hardest things for any writer to do is hand their precious manuscript over to an editor. Why? Because that's our blood, sweat and tears. Those 100,000 or less words aren't just a piece of paper with words. That's our baby. We have a story to tell the world.
But what happens when an editor or beta reader returns your manuscript with a notes that you don't agree with? What if they come back to tell you it needs more work and until you fix those problems it isn't ready to be published? Your bound to feel upset. Don't they understand that this manuscript is the next bestseller?
Before you get so upset that you decide to ignore the editor and self publish your work take a break. Put the notes and the manuscript aside for a few days then come back to it. The editor is not your enemy. They know what works and doesn't work. Their job is to accurately prepare your manuscript for the market. A good editor is an author's best friend. They want you to succeed. I know it can be hard to accept criticism but if your going to be an author you have to accept it.
So calm down and then go back to their notes. Read them carefully and if you still have concerns about what they are telling you approach your editor with them. A good editor will listen to the author. They will walk you through their thought process but they are not a writing coach. If you need a writing coach then hire one. There are plenty of people in the industry who want to help you succeed. Before you hire any of these people, though, be sure to check them out with other authors you trust. There are people out there who want to help you but there are still others who want to make a buck off of people. You have to be careful when choosing a writing coach, editor or publisher. But we'll talk about that another time.
The editor and author need to be friends. They need to know your writing style, your target market and your genre. The more they understand you the more they can help you. My editor, Lee Porche, has been my editor for three years and I wouldn't trade her for anyone else. In fact, she is the editing director of our publishing house and continues to work on all my books. Your editor needs to be your writing best friend. So instead of jumping to hostilities when he or she gives you criticism you need to foster the relationship. Understand their point of view. Sometimes another pair of eyes on your manuscript is a great thing. Authors are their own worst editors.