Editing Your Best Friend

March 23rd, 2023 in Writing by April Michelle Davis 0

When I was in a composition class in high school, the teacher had the students exchange essays so we could “edit” each other’s work. My best friend edited mine, and I received my essay back with a few red marks and a “This is really good.” Of course, my essay was average at best, but my friend had no editing experience, and even if she had, she would not have been willing to hurt my feelings.

Today, I receive work from authors who do the same thing. They have their spouses, parents, or friends read their manuscripts and then tell me their work has been edited. Their “editors” lack the expertise to give meaningful feedback and often, in fear of insulting the writer, keep any negative feedback to themselves.

A professional editor will not only correct basic spelling, punctuation, and grammatical errors, but also ensure that authors are relaying to their readers exactly what the authors intend. An editor works with the authors to create the best product possible. The editor’s job, my job, is to make the author look good while being transparent to the audience.

What are some other reasons of why writers need professional editors? Have you had some success stories with editors?