Editor Much?

I’m wondering, out loud as it were, how working as an editor might affect my writing. Any of my writing friends, do you work, or have you ever worked, as an editor? Editing is in the right field, and I don’t think it will hurt my actual writing, but I’m curious if it will affect it at all. Will I get so tired of prose that I won’t want to write my own? Will it help me think about writing more often, and give me an itch to make my own?

Anyway, these are the things I’m pondering lately. I can’t give many details. It’s fair to say, however, that it’s not idle musings, but rather legitimate ponder fodder. 🙂

6 thoughts on “Editor Much?”

  1. Editting is a completely separate activity from writing. Brainwise, writing is right-brained while editting is left-brained. Editting is about rearranging what’s already there on the page, not coming up with new stuff.

    Editting will show you all sorts of writing pitfalls that you may be unable to see in your own writing until you’ve seen it in someone else’s. It’ll speed up the whole process of learning how to separate your prose-making skills from your sense of self-worth. It’ll show you that precious perfect prose isn’t really so precious after all.

    In short, yes, it’ll help make you a better writer. 🙂

  2. Chiming in as someone who has no credentials whatsoever, I’d have to think that editing others would make you a better writer. What you learn to do dispassionately for others you can eventually make second nature for yourself. (i.e. cutting pretty flotsam that doesn’t really add anything.)

    My GF who, in one of her previous careers was a copywriter, has been looking over my chapters after I’ve done my edit and before I post them. She hasn’t failed yet to come up with something that could be tightened, a better word, or just “These three paragraphs must die.”

    She’s been right every time.

    Oh, and BTW, even though I wouldn’t want you to talk about something you can’t talk about, it sounds like something where you’d be able to call the IT guy instead of dealing with it yourself. Just saying. 😀

  3. I have the unfortunate task of having to edit my own work (for my job, not just for my own writing) and it’s interesting what I’ve learned.

    It has helped me to hone my fiction, as I tend to get regular feedback on my non-fiction, and have learned what works and what doesn’t.

    I’ve also learned a lot of tricks, the most important of which is put something away for a month before you try and edit your own writing, or you’ll be wasting your time.

  4. I’ve never worked as an editor, but I’ve done tons of technical writing, both writing and as a second reader/editor finalizing others’ work. I think it improves my attention to detail and my ability to spot poor language and verbal excesses. Good luck!

  5. Hubby, meaning it as a compliment – and I tried to take it as one, I swear! – called me an editor the other night at dinner. He has a (in my opinion) brilliant idea, and I keep giving him ways to get it out, while checking his incongruities.

    I’m OK with the editor thing – I just pray he never calls me a critic!


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