Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The #1 Reason Why I'd Pay Again for a Professional Edit


If you've read any of my last two posts, you know what an ordeal it has been for me to review all the editor’s comments and suggestions. No longer do my characters tip, jump, twist, or gyrate all over the place. Nor do they put themselves into cliché scenes or forget to have a purpose and goal in walking into a new chapter. Yes, most all of those extra words are gone, too. In fact, I lost almost 2000 unnecessary words.

But as I dug through her suggestions, I discovered something else she was doing for me.

She was pointing me toward becoming the kind of writer I wanted to be. Yeah, the light went on.

Let me back up. When I wrote this MS three years ago, I wanted it to be a light, fluffy chick-lit kind of romance. Nothing too deep. Easy emotions. Frivolous words.

Once I saw where the editor was going with her comments, I understood how she was trying to pull more from me. She was trying to get me to write this book on a different level. A more realistic level. Like the kind of books I enjoy reading.

Am I where I want to be yet?

Truthfully, I’d have to say no. But her edits have shown me a clearer path.

So for that reason alone, the money I spent on someone to clean up my words has been worth it. Good-bye fluff. Good-bye sappy romance. Hello me.

What is the main reason you’d pay someone to edit your work?(besides to get published)

46 comments:

Journaling Woman said...

The main reason I would pay for editing is because I love my words too much and hate to murder them with...editing. :) Yes I would pay for honesty through a professional editor.

I see growth here!!!

Candyland said...

To make me, and the story BETTER. That's what it's all about. Being the best we can be.

Diane said...

Keep stretching! You're going to make it!!! :O)

Nehha N Josshi said...

For a different pov...may be:)

Lin Floyd said...

improvement is not an easy journey but necessary. good for you.

Rachna Chhabria said...

Terri...I would pay someone to edit my work so that both my manuscript and I improve. A paid editor's only interest would be to make me stretch myself as a writer and make my story better. And I would get am unbiased opinion and feedback from an expert.

Janna Qualman said...

Wonderful!

I think if I'd already had others look at it, but something was still missing, I'd consider paying a pro.

Jeanette Levellie said...

Just what you said: to become a better writer. To see where I've messed up, and to be handed some tools to clean up. It's painful, but worth every penny.

I'm so proud of you.

Kenda said...

I paid for a professional edit earlier this year--and am grateful I did. Why? Because she saw things I was blind to. Things you'd think I should know, but didn't--yet. Now these things jump out at me big time, and I can get rid of them before anyone else sees them!

Sarah Forgrave said...

My professional edit challenged me to take my writing to the next level too. Now my radar will be set to catch those things when I draft my next novel.

Patti Lacy said...

I am SOOOO an advocate of what you're talkin' about.
My professional edit cut about a year or MORE from my journey to publication.

You would not BELIEVE the things I learned...
Patti
Look at it this way...it's like a one-on-one with a published author/editor/publisher staff member!!!!

Julie Jarnagin said...

This has been a really interesting process to read about. Thanks for sharing!

Saumya said...

Well, my main reason now would probably be because you've inspired me to do so!! I also just want my work to be as wonderful as it can be.

Rhonda Schrock said...

I'm not there yet, but am proud of you for going through it. Wishing you all kinds of success after pushing through the pain and difficulty!

paulgreci said...

What a great process of self-discovery you've had!

Good luck with the next leg!

Susan R. Mills said...

Exactly what you said. It would be worth it to have someone push me to be the writer I want to be. I'm glad you had such a great experience with this.

Clarissa Draper said...

My first editor told me my manuscript need a better hook! And I hum and hawed about it for months thinking she was wrong but then the hook hit me and yes, it made my writing go a step further. I would recommend an editor any day.
CD

Kara said...

To make my writing better, to get a different prespective from an unbiased professional, and to make my story the best possible.
Sounds like you are learning a lot from your editor, what a great experience:)

Joanne Sher said...

To get a fresh perspective. To make sure that what's going on in MY head actually make sense. To stretch me to tell my story in the most compelling manner possible. (cuz I get it for half price? LOL)

Jill Kemerer said...

I would pay for the inside perspective. I can read all the writing craft books in the world, but an editor will see things I won't. It can only take your book to the next level, in my opinion.

Jolene Perry said...

Sounds like she helped you find your writer's voice. Cool. I bet your next project will feel like a piece of cake after this process ;)

Carmen said...

Terri, it's been such a long road for you. It's been fun walking along side, if only from a distance. I'm excited what the outcome of this journey will produce. I'm really truly happy for you!

JW said...

Awesome, it sounds like you have a positive editor who knows what she is doing. I haven't finished my MS yet, but you give me reason to believe I will be paying for one when I am done. As my first MS I will be grateful for honest input!

Carol J. Garvin said...

Terri, thanks for commenting on my interview with Keli. I'll be interested to see what part that little diamond ring plays when your book is published. :)

A good professional editor knows what makes a story stronger, and a strong one will be better received by readers. I thought I wrote reasonably well but was surprised at things my editor pointed out. When we're in the process of writing from the heart we aren't unbiased enough (or perhaps brave enough) to recognize a story's shortcomings. I think using a professional editor is well worth the investment.

K9friend said...

Because if you find someone really good to look things over and are determined not to argue or defend your work, it's both a journey and a learning experience.

Lynn said...

The editor has let your true voice sing through! That is so great!

Karen Lange said...

I would get one for the same reason as you. I'd want polish and input and the confidence that goes with this whole process. Glad you've been sharing your journey with us!
Blessings,
Karen

eeleenlee said...

I need an extra pair of eyes to do the editing for me

Amie B said...

crits, edits, revisions - they're all difficult to take no matter who they're from because it means we're not perfect.

thankfully, all that feedback from others really does help us become better.

i'm so glad you're finding the true you in writing!

T. Anne said...

I paid an editor for the exact same reason. i wanted to sharped my skills and have her guide me towards my full potential! It sounds like you love your editor and that's a great thing!

Sandra Heska King said...

I'd like to think they'd tell me I write better than I think I do. :)

Or at least get me to that point.

Deb Shucka said...

I'm so excited for you - that you've found this tremendous insight, the gift from the pain.

I'd pay someone to edit for the same reason - clear, objective eyes and heart that don't know what I can't do, only what might be possible.

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Terri -

I'd pay for someone to edit my manuscript to point out the areas where my reader is pulled out of the story, the plot is unrealistic, and/or the setting weak.

Blessings,
Susan :)

Lynda Young said...

We learn so much when someone edits our work. We see our stories through different eyes. It's so important to be open to professional editing.

Tabitha Bird said...

What you described is Exactly why I pay for edits. I want to be a better writer. An editor will pull that out of you, if they are good that is. Sounds like your editor was very good.

sarah said...

reading this excites me...it shows how much I have to learn in writing a story that has impact. I'm not at the point yet to hire an editor...still working on completing the manuscript. but when the day comes....I so look forward to it. Glad the experience has been so positive.

Sassy Granny ... said...

It never hurts to get come objective eyes on our beloved pet writings, or work, or goals. Expert advice gets our friends off the hook too!

Blessings,
Kathleen

Jackee said...

Wonderful! The two prof edits I've paid for were because I wasn't in a position to tell if I had something I should send out. In one case I was right and one wrong.

Thanks for sharing these wonderful insights, Terri!

kathy taylor said...

I hope the revisions are going well for you, Terri. I'm still working on mine, too. With family illnesses and a computer that completely died, it's going slower than I thought. I'm trusting in God's timing.

I remember your Mom made this possible for you. I am hoping she is well.

Amy DeTrempe said...

To point out my weaknesses and strengths. It is great that you have gotten some insight.

Rose Mary said...

It sounds as if you have learned a lot from this experience, Terri. This is something that I have debated about doing for a while. One of the main reasons I haven't is money. Also, the editors that I've dealt with all seem to want something different from each other, so..it's still something I'm considering. I have enjoyed the critiques and suggestions from the contests~I find the agents and editors comments very helpful.

sketchesofacommonlife.com said...

Blessings to you! I know it's going to be wonderful! Good investment! I stumbled onto my WIP yesterday in all my organizing work. *sigh* Abandoned again. I really should finish it...if only for myself.

Jill said...

Argh, I wish I could catch blog posts earlier! I get so busy and do so lose track of the days. I'd hire a professional because editing is hard! And sometimes editors, even unpaid ones, will tell me things that I already knew and their affirmation lifts the burden from off my shoulders. I don't have the guts to make big changes on my own, I really don't. And I don't usually catch the little things.

Gaia said...

Hi Terri, everything's coming up roses for you! Just to let you know I am back into blogging. Was tired and stressed and lost a grip on what I really wanted to do with my life. I missed you guys and writing too. So I hope for once I will stick with this for a long long time. Blessings

Car Insurance said...

I think if I'd already had others look at it, but something was still missing, I'd consider paying a pro.

Car Insurance said...

I think if I'd already had others look at it, but something was still missing, I'd consider paying a pro.