I’ve recently decided to use my writing and editing experience and years and years of writing classes and conferences to start a side hustle of editing. Well, it’s not really a side hustle. Since I’ve been sidelined by MS, my regular hustles have faded into the mists of time, and while I’m just finishing up my second novel, that doesn’t bring in the millions I’d envisioned as a writer in grade 4. Royalties are somewhat less…
So editing will have to be a main hustle.
I’m the sort who wants to ensure I have the right qualifications to do a job, so I’ve been taking classes from the Editorial Freelancers Association, and I’d like to highly recommend them. They make my brain kick over and that’s a good thing.
Those of you who do editing know how lovely it can be to edit someone’s writing who writes well. Just a couple of nudges here and there, mainly facilitated by the fresh set of eyes, and it’s all happiness and light. I love that.
But editing the bad writer – well, I’ve had experience with that, too, and it isn’t as happy as the above. It’s so hard to apply correction without sounding like that Grade 8 teacher who demanded you copy their discussion exactly. It’s also hard not to take over sometimes, try to fix things, especially when the writer you are working with is begging you to do so.
I edited a friend’s book recently and inserted in the document this comment, “Consider adding more to this activity to raise the tension”, only to get the revised document back with my exact words typed into that space. Sigh.
Of course this is an easy way to see whether the author you are working with actually is reading your comments, I suppose. And there is the joy of taking a manuscript forward to make it better, especially when the writer sees it themselves and charges forward on their own. I love that, too.
In any case, this course I’m taking on Developmental Editing has given me all sorts of tips about how to tackle stories good and bad. It’s changing my own novel, too, as I apply the techniques to it. I’m adding the things I’m learning to those I’ve gathered from my existing experience writing several published articles and stories, editing several novels, and judging contests for Bony Blithe, the 3day Novella, Atlantic Writing Competition, and more. Outside of my fiction work, I’ve written and edited non-fiction, research reports, press releases and media campaigns. I’m also a retired nurse and epidemiologist.
Need some writing edited? I’d love to help you out! Contact me at dorothyanneb at gmail.com or through Somewhat Grumpy Press.