As the Executive Editor for Radiant Publishing House Inc., I can say with the utmost confidence that I love my job. Nowadays, I’m seeing this becoming rarer than a mooing steak. A lot of us settle in the tasks we take on, whereas the only settling I’m doing is behind my keyboard to take pleasure in nitpicking grammar, spelling, and punctuation.
Yesterday, the President of RPH sent over the first round of edits for Secrets of the City of Gold, which I am all for celebrating, because it’s one step closer to being in your hands!!
But now that takes me to the other side of the process. While I didn’t expect it to come out clean, on the contrary, I anticipated all the comments, markers, suggestions, and the splash of comic relief that I usually provide. I wasn’t turned off, or set in a panic, I was thrilled.
Because neither I, or my writing is perfect. I make mistakes, and I’m not going to get it right the first go around.
The President of RPH and I had a wonderful conversation on teamwork and editing. And it’s true, no one can edit their own work. A second, or even third pair of eyes is ideal (I’m going to be saying this a lot). However, in order to successfully be part of the editing process, you need to be open to constructive criticism.
Tell me where I messed up. Don’t tell me that you just love it. I’m not fishing for compliments, I’m fishing for details.
If someone is outright telling you, “This is terrible” without explaining why, is not constructive, it’s an outright stab. And you don’t need that kind of negativity in your life.
If someone is telling you, “Listen, look to reformat and adjust this paragraph for reasons x, y, and z.” I’d say that’s more constructive than the above.
But if you’re offended by both, then you need to have another/different conversation.
To be defensive is a step backwards. That means you’re not ready to share, and you’re not ready to receive any feedback on your novel once it’s released. Plus, editors spend a lot of time dedicating themselves to see your novel achieve greatness, no one is going to take time out of their schedules to watch you fall on your face. I promise.
Thurber said it best. Editors are not only the housekeepers of your novel, but also a writer’s counselor. Counselors cannot aid those who are closed off. So always come in with an open mind, because we’re here to help, and not hurt!
And especially here at Radiant Publishing House Inc., we want to see you succeed, not fail.
As we get your young paperback ready to go off into the world, we want to make sure you both are prepared for what lies ahead.
Don’t think I won’t be crying when Secrets is in its final stages. I’ll be a proud mama, sobbing, as I watch it go off to be displayed on Amazon.