Nearly 20 years in the publishing industry, and this is the first blog post I’ll have written for myself, ever. Seriously!
“Oh, boy…another blog,” you’re probably thinking to yourself. It’s okay. I get it. There is an overabundance of information out there these days, so why should you devote any of your (rightfully) precious time to reading my ramblings? Here’s my hope: You will find some useful writing advice here from the words of a professional editor. I simply cannot resist making the world a better place by fixing one typo at a time.
A little about me: In high school I dreamed of becoming a professional writer. Like so many angsty teenagers around me, I wrote bad poetry and wrote in journal every day. I worked my way through The Artist’s Way and asked for the latest Writer’s Digest for Christmas. I even went to a college that offered my ideal major, Creative Writing with an emphasis in Fiction.
During my senior seminar at UCSC, I found myself putting off working on my own writing and turning first to my classmates’ pieces. (We worked in critique groups, marking up and discussing each other’s manuscripts.) Halfway through the course, classmates outside of my critique group were asking me to look over their work. One of my classmates told me his mom was an editor, and she remarked that my comments on his manuscript were very good.
That was my ah-ha moment.
I enjoyed editing way more than writing my own material. I found a measurable joy in finding plot holes, discovering character weaknesses, and eliminating spelling and grammatical errors. I’m going to be an editor, I decided. And that’s the path I pursued, attending the Denver Publishing Institute and becoming a member of various professional editorial organizations. Along the way I needed to scratch the itch of attending culinary school, so I earned my AS in Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management. This culinary background informs my editing in yet another genre that includes cookbooks and culinary-related memoirs. To be honest, I don’t think I can ever stop learning, and I think that’s a good thing. Any good editor is open to learning new subject material, and I’m no different.
I love what I do. I love helping writers refine their voice through sentence structure, word choice, and overall development. We all have something to say, right? I just want to make sure that “something” is clear and as powerful as it can possibly be.
So, here’s my first bit of advice if you are a writer reading this: First and foremost, write. I attended a book reading by Christopher Moore a few months ago, and he put it perfectly: “Write every day like it’s your job.” It’s true! Whether it’s a few paragraphs or a few chapters, you have to work those proverbial muscles. And when you’re ready to refine your writing technique, that’s when you contact me. Together, we’ll make sure you’re finding the right words for your message.