IWSG : Working with Editors

Posted on November 5, 2014
I had a great experience with my editor for Selfish Moment. She gave me valuable feedback and even insight to the medical aspect of the story since she was a retired trauma nurse, which was a surprise bonus. She works on mostly contemporary fiction, and everything was great. I even submitted my novel to the Writer's Digest Self Publishing Competition last year, mainly for the overall review, and I received what I feel was a pretty good score. You can see the judge's review commentary in a separate post here.

I decided to go with another editor for Distant Origins since it's a sci-fi thriller, with someone who said they worked with the genre. It wasn't as smooth, and getting overall feedback was like pulling porcupine needles from a gorilla's back.

Gorilla's don't have needles you say?...Exactly!

For Family Relics, my current project, I am working with yet another editor, except this is more like a team with several steps in the editing process. This is all new to me. A team? For my little book? It is a bigger price tag than going with a single freelance editor, but I feel it's worth it. I need the process. Just like I have revised my novel a number of times, I need to work with editors that will help me edit my novel in an iterative process. I mean, how many "final" versions did you create before arriving at the actual "final" manuscript? The file name of my last revision was FamilyRelics_Final_v13.doc. It was the 13th version of the "final" manuscript.

That's me, but with less facial hair.

Also, this time I'm sending my beta readers a close-to-finished copy instead of the pre-edited manuscript. I told my betas to overlook the grammar and focus on plot holes and story issues for Distant Origins because it was being reviewed at the same time. (Mistake #72 - Yes, I've had many.) A beta reader's eyes are fresh and unscathed, they can catch things a tired editors eyes can miss.

So what are your experiences with editors? Good? Bad? Meh? I'd love to hear your stories!!


* * *

Be sure to visit other awesome authors/writers on 




17 comments:

  1. It's so hard to find an editor that really "gets" your work, your voice, your ideas and runs with it, making it shine. Good luck to you on your projects! Sounds like you're having fun!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's definitely a learning experience, Lisa. I take recommendations to heart now, especially from fellow indie authors. There is a thin line between fun and hysteria when it comes to the editing process.

      Delete
  2. I don't have the experience of working with editors...yet. Hopefully, one day I will.

    I got a good laugh from your revision process pic. Haha! Yeah, I feel like that at times (without the facial hair, of course). :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What? You don't like my facial hair? I said "less" facial hair, not "without" facial hair.

      Just kidding. :-P I love that drawing.

      Delete
  3. I was so lucky to land an editor I totally clicked with. Of course, I now go through two editors. One is brutal, and one loves me. The duality of it leaves me confident, although I wouldn't mind a whole team. That would be awesome!

    Unleashing the Dreamworld

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I would take brutal over non-responsive on the cloudiest of days. From initial emails between my current editorial team, I have a good feeling.

      Delete
    2. Awesome! And I'm totally with you. If an editor isn't brutal, I feel like they didn't really look at the piece.

      Delete
  4. Sorry the second editor didn't work out. A team is always better. More professional eyes on your manuscript.
    My publisher's editor is great to work with. I've been fortunate.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm sorry too, about my second editor. She won't be getting another call from me. :-1

      Delete
  5. Very funny that you had 13 final versions :D I've never considered a team of editors, but that's a great idea. The more eyes, the better.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It seems not to be so unusual. Even for small things, like my blog header image, I made five or six versions. I don't like to delete anything. (I wonder if that's a type of OCD...)

      Delete
  6. My editors are pretty bomb.

    I've had some bad experiences, but I just found a new editor. I have my own assembled "team" and a process to editing. I have two separate editors that do separate things, and then a third proofreader, so I really work with three editors.

    And if you ever need a beta reader, send that puppy my way!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've got you listed on my beta squad, Katie. Wohoo!


      Delete
  7. My publisher goes through 3 edits. So I get 3 different editors with 3 perspectives which is nice. Some click and some don't. Good Luck!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is cool! They get to see your progression, and comment further. I like that. It helps you grow.

      Delete
  8. I've experienced a few editors. Most are great, but once I got a really bad one who frequently made suggestions for my manuscript that were grammatically incorrect. That was difficult.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What?!?! Who is editing who there? That scenario deserves its own comic strip.

      Delete