. . . simply a pair of fresh eyes. So said American writer Thomas Higginson. I’m not sure I’d go that far but I do think a pair of fresh eyes is essential when it comes to refining a manuscript.
As a professional writer, I rely on editors at various times in the publishing journey. If I’m working with a traditional publisher, developmental editors are the first to see my work. They provide feedback on my story and characters, the pacing and the structure. Copy editors check my continuity, my logic and occasionally comment on my sentence structure or grammar. Proofreaders catch any last minute mistakes. In the traditional publishing world, the publisher hires the editors to take care of those things. All I have to do (after writing the book!) is get my work to that editor on time and address any issues based on the feedback I receive. It’s pretty straightforward.
When it comes to self-publishing my books, I decide whether or not to hire an independent editor to help me polish my novels. And it’s an easy decision: I always do. I’m a good editor, and I probably could do it myself, but it’s not easy to edit your own work. In fact, it’s damned hard. There’ve been times when I’ve traded editing favors with other writers (and that works well) but it’s not always possible to find another writer willing and able to do the trade when you need it to happen. So paying for a professional editor is an expense I’m happy to incur.
Editing is fun. In a lot of ways it’s my favorite part of writing. It’s gratifying to take a novel that’s almost there and polish the rough edges, transforming it into an attention-grabbing, unputdownable read. Given my thrill with that whole tweaking process, a few months ago I began doing some freelance editing for other writers. So as well as creating my own fictional worlds, I’m spending a little time immersing myself in fictional worlds created by others. And I’m thoroughly enjoying it. You can find out more about my editing services by clicking here: http://lauralangston.com/editing/